County of Wayne et al v. Purdue Pharma L.P. et al

Filing 29

ORDER (1) Granting Defendants' 16 MOTION to Stay Proceedings, (2) Terminating Defendants' 14 Motion for Extension of Time to Answer Plaintiffs' Complaint as Moot, and (3) Cancelling November 16, 2017, Telephonic Status Conference. Signed by District Judge Matthew F. Leitman. (HMon)

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UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT EASTERN DISTRICT OF MICHIGAN SOUTHERN DIVISION COUNTY OF WAYNE and COUNTY OF OAKLAND, Plaintiffs, Case No. 17-cv-13334 Hon. Matthew F. Leitman v. PURDUE PHARMA L.P., et al., Defendants. _________________________________/ ORDER (1) GRANTING DEFENDANTS’ MOTION TO STAY PROCEEDINGS (ECF #16), (2) TERMINATING DEFENDANTS’ MOTION FOR EXTENSION OF TIME TO ANSWER PLAINTIFFS’ COMPLAINT AS MOOT (ECF #14), AND (3) CANCELLING NOVEMBER 16, 2017, TELEPHONIC STATUS CONFERENCE On October 12, 2017, Plaintiffs the County of Wayne and the County of Oakland filed this action against twelve Defendant pharmaceutical manufacturers and/or distributors. (See Compl., ECF #1.) In the Complaint, Plaintiffs assert claims under Michigan and federal law related to the sale and distribution of certain prescription opioid products. (See id.) Plaintiffs have now served the Complaint on six of the named Defendants. (See Proofs of Service, ECF ## 7-12.) On November 9, 2017, Defendants AmerisourceBergen Corporation and McKesson Corporation filed a motion for an extension of time to answer or otherwise respond to the Complaint (the “Motion to Extend”). (See ECF #14.) In 1 that motion, AmerisourceBergen and McKesson assert that “[o]ver 90 opioid-related complaints have been filed in federal district courts throughout the United States” and that a “motion is pending before the Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation to transfer [these] cases for coordinated and consolidated pretrial proceedings pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1407.” (Id. at Pg. ID 2304-05.) That motion is scheduled to be heard on November 30, 2017. (See id. at Pg. ID 2305.) Plaintiffs filed with the Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation a “Notice of Related Action” in which they stated that this action “involves common questions of law and fact with the action filed by moving plaintiffs in [the multidistrict] proceedings.” In Re National Prescription Opiate Litigation (MDL No. 2804) (ECF #184). Plaintiffs therefore asked that their action “be considered as a related action for purposes of th[e] pending multidistrict litigation.”1 Id. AmerisourceBergen and McKesson ask the Court to allow them to respond to the Complaint after the Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation issues a ruling on the consolidation motion. (See id. at 2305-06.) Also on November 9, 2017, Defendants Purdue Pharma L.P., Cephalon, Inc., Teva Pharmaceuticals USA, Inc., Janseen Pharmaceuticals, Inc., and Insys Therapeutics, Inc. filed a motion to stay this action (the “Motion to Stay”). (See ECF 1 Plaintiffs have not taken any position in this Court with respect to the motion to consolidate in front of the Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation. 2 #16.) These Defendants seek a stay of proceedings pending the Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation’s ruling on the consolidation motion. (See id.) The Court has reviewed Defendants’ motions and Plaintiffs’ responses (see ECF ## 26 and 27) and deems it appropriate to decide the motions without oral argument. See E.D. Mich. Local Rule 7.1(f)(2). The Court concludes that a short stay of proceedings is appropriate in order to allow the Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation to hear and rule on the consolidation motion currently pending before that panel. Accordingly, IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that:  The Motion to Stay (ECF #16) is GRANTED as follows: This action shall be STAYED until January 15, 2018. If this action has not been consolidated and transferred to multidistrict litigation at that time, the Court will convene a telephonic status conference to discuss whether it is appropriate to lift the stay. No Defendant need answer or otherwise respond to the Complaint until further order of the Court.  The Motion to Extend (ECF #14) is TERMINATED AS MOOT.  The scheduled November 16, 2017, telephonic status conference (see ECF #22) is CANCELLED. s/Matthew F. Leitman MATTHEW F. LEITMAN UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE Dated: November 15, 2017 3 I hereby certify that a copy of the foregoing document was served upon the parties and/or counsel of record on November 15, 2017, by electronic means and/or ordinary mail. s/Holly A. Monda Case Manager (810) 341-9764 4

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