Earlier this month, Bayer AG designated $1.5 billion for litigation related to its Yasmin and Yaz contraceptive pills, and now it looks like the company will be dipping into that fund. On Friday, Bayer agreed to pay $24 million to settle claims from plaintiffs in Illinois, California, New Jersey and Pennsylvania that Yasmin and Yaz caused them to suffer gallbladder injuries.
Under the deal, plaintiffs whose gallbladders were injured will receive $2,000, and plaintiffs whose gallbladders were removed will receive $3,000. The settlement is capped at $24 million, however, so depending on how many people file claims, the payments may be lower. The terms of the agreement also allow Bayer to walk away if fewer than 90 percent of eligible individuals opt into the settlement.
Since 2009, Bayer has been hit with more than 10,000 articles alleging failure to warn of health issues that result from the use of Yasmin and Yaz, according to its annual report filed in February. The report also stated that the company has reached agreements to pay $1 billion to settle 4,800 claims that the birth control pills cause blood clots. However, women who collect the gallbladder settlement will not be able to collect the blood clot settlement, Thomson Reuters reports.
The company did not admit liability as part of the settlement, and maintains that it does not believe the birth control pills increase risk of gallbladder disease.
For more InsideCounsel coverage of birth control lawsuits, see below: