Merck, known as MSD outside the United States and Canada, today confirmed terms of an agreement with plaintiffs to resolve Plubell v. Merck, an economic class action lawsuit pending in Missouri state court. The class consists of Missouri consumers who purchased Vioxx, but do not claim any physical injury, and who seek to recover damages under the Missouri Merchandising Practices Act.
Under the agreement, Merck will pay to resolve all validated claims submitted by class members, approved attorneys' fees and expenses, and settlement notice costs and administrative expenses. The company recorded a charge for this settlement in the third quarter of 2012. The agreement is subject to court approval and certain conditions related to participation.
"This agreement is in the best interest of the company and its shareholders. It reduces the uncertainty of litigation and ongoing defense costs, and helps us to remain focused on bringing forward innovative products and services for our customers," said Bruce N. Kuhlik, executive vice president and general counsel of Merck.
Judge Marco Roldan is presiding over the case. Merck is represented by John Beisner of Skadden, Arps, Slate Meagher & Flom LLP and Doug Marvin of Williams & Connolly LLP.About Merck Today's Merck is a global healthcare leader working to help the world be well. Merck is known as MSD outside the United States and Canada. Through our prescription medicines, vaccines, biologic therapies, and consumer care and animal health products, we work with customers and operate in more than 140 countries to deliver innovative health solutions. We also demonstrate our commitment to increasing access to healthcare through far-reaching policies, programs and partnerships. For more information, visit www.merck.com and connect with us on Twitter, Facebook and YouTube. Forward-Looking Statement This news release includes “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of the safe harbor provisions of the United States Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Such statements may include, but are not limited to, statements about the benefits of the merger between Merck and Schering-Plough, including future financial and operating results, the combined company’s plans, objectives, expectations and intentions and other statements that are not historical facts. Such statements are based upon the current beliefs and expectations of Merck’s management and are subject to significant risks and uncertainties. Actual results may differ from those set forth in the forward-looking statements.