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The Stryker Compensation Deadline Has Passed—Again

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Kalamazoo, MIWhen the Stryker Orthopedics Rejuvenate Modular Hip System Recall resulted in the $1.45 billion settlement announced November 3 of last year, plaintiffs initially had no more than about five weeks to respond. Provided the hip implants had failed and had been replaced via revision surgery prior to the announced date of the settlement, respondents had until December 14, 2014 to react. No matter that the Christmas season was in full swing, the powers that be appeared to decide that five weeks was plenty of time to spread the word and get the ball rolling.

Well, maybe it wasn’t - because in the end, the deadline was extended into March of this year. Was it because an insufficient number of plaintiffs had come forward? Or did the corporation hear the cries of lawyers and health advocates that five weeks to spread the message, pulling people away from their Christmas shopping and preparations for Yule to submit applications for compensation, simply wasn’t realistic.

The deadline to enroll in the settlement was originally mid-December. It was then extended to early March, only to be extended again to March 30 of this year.

The deadline, thus, has passed - again. But could it be extended yet again?

Stryker orthopedics metallosis patients without the capacity or opportunity to respond before now, may very well hope for another extension. The stakes are high.

When the Rejuvenate modular hip systems began failing at an unprecedented rate - and for some, introducing metallosis into the bloodstream - the Stryker Orthopedics Rejuvenate Modular Hip System Recall was initiated. Within 18 months of the recall, Stryker had negotiated the $1.45 billion settlement. The devil, of course, is in the details - however, the overall thrust of the settlement required that failures had to have occurred prior to November 3 of last year. A key provision is that the hip(s) would have had to have been replaced through revision surgery prior to that date for plaintiffs to qualify for settlement funding.

That funding can be substantial, with Stryker recall lawsuit plaintiffs qualifying for up to $300,000 for a single hip and up to $600,000 for both hips. Patients would be quick to point out that such payouts are justified, given the rigors of the initial surgery, the pain and/or metallosis experienced, and the complexity, discomfort and inconvenience of a second surgery so soon after the first. Revision surgery is usually more complicated than the original hip implant, often requiring additional healing time and further time away from a job or career.

Stryker was originally lauded for initially pulling the trigger on the Stryker Orthopedics Rejuvenate Modular Hip System Recall, then getting the settlement funding in place relatively quickly.

But were they too quick on the deadline? That could be, for some, a $600,000 question…


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