Approximately $215,000.00. That is the average dollar amount the Yaz Blood Clot, DVT, and/or PE lawsuits are settling for. What does this really mean for the Plaintiff? What will they actually “take home” for their pain and suffering, injuries, constant worry, missed work, depression, testing, long-term care, and a life of additional doctor’s visits? By my math a plaintiff being offered a settlement of $250,000.00 will receive approximately $90,000.00 less any additional lawyer’s fees or any taxes, so for argument’s sake, let’s say the plaintiff actually takes home $70,000.00 – a total dollar amount that is more than most of us would ever see at one time and when someone offers you more money than you make in a year, do you refuse?
I’m a few weeks away from getting my first settlement offer. My case will be lumped in with a group of other like-plaintiffs and we will be offered a single settlement amount that my lawyers (with the help of a consultant) will divvy up between me and the other in my group. Not sure I’m thrilled with this process, but I understand why they do it – they want to settle the largest amount of cases as quickly as possible. Both Bayer and the lawyers are smart; they chose a dollar amount that is just tempting enough and are offering relatively quick payouts(quick for judicial standards). These settlements will NOT bankrupt Bayer – they will barely put a dent in their earnings. Bayer wants to buy us out for the least amount of money possible and move on and that’s exactly what they’re doing.
Now what happens if I think the settlement amount I’m offered is unacceptable? Will I actually be given the chance to negotiate? At the risk of sounding greedy $70K net does not make me feel as though justice was served. It makes me feel dismissed. Will $70K cover what I’ve already paid in medical bills? Yes. But, there is a huge list of “what ifs” that need to be considered. What if I lose my health insurance and have another episode? What if next time it’s a stroke and am left paralyzed? $70k won’t even cover a week’s stay in the hospital.
So, will I refuse the settlement offer if it’s not more than $250K? I guess we’ll have to see. Our medical and credit card bills are killing us. Can we hold out for a 2nd settlement offer if the 1st one stinks? I’m not so sure, but I’d like to think we have nothing but time to wait until Bayer comes back with an improved offer (assuming I get one to begin with). Since these cases will NEVER go to trial our only hope for sticking it to Bayer is holding out for as much money as possible and making sure everyone else from here on out holds out for as much as possible too. Easier said than done, I know (and Bayer knows it too).