Johnson & Johnson Sanctioned by Federal Judge for Delaying and Running Up Costs in Pinnacle Hip Replacement Lawsuit


A Federal Judge sanctions Johnson & Johnson for leveraging the court system to delay a Pinnacle hip replacement lawsuit and wasting the plaintiffs’ time and money on an issue that he finds “objectively unreasonable.” Judge Ricardo Martinez even ruled J&J pay the plaintiff’s legal fees in this matter (Case No. C22-01406 RSM – United States District Court for the Western District of Washington at Seattle). 

The Plaintiff, Linda Yahne, filed her lawsuit in Washington State Court against the Johnson & Johnson defendants which manufactured her implant as well as the in-state defendants responsible for the sale and marketing of her implant.  Washington law explicitly allows the pursuit of product liability actions against both manufacturers and  sellers.  Further, where a plaintiff and any defendant reside in the same state, federal courts lack jurisdiction. Instead, such lawsuits must be pursued in state court.    

In October 2022, Johnson & Johnson “removed” Plaintiff’s lawsuit from state court to federal court, arguing that the federal court should ignore the in-state defendants.  Johnson & Johnson claimed the sellers were “fraudulently joined” because, as they argued, Washington law does not allow the Plaintiff to sue the sellers.     

Federal Judge Martinez of the Western District of Washington disagreed, sending the case back to state court in a stern order blasting Johnson & Johnson’s improper conduct:   

“The significant amount of caselaw on this matter of removal leads the Court to conclude that Defendants failed to properly investigate and answer Plaintiffs’ claims in state court and have leveraged the removal process to federal court to unduly delay the matter and incur additional costs to Plaintiffs. Plaintiffs are therefore entitled to costs and expenses incurred in connection with this remand.”   

This lawsuit involves the alleged failure of Johnson & Johnson’s Pinnacle metal on metal hip replacements, leading to catastrophic medical and physical outcomes for the plaintiffs.   

mctlaw is a national leader in orthopedic joint replacement litigation. Our attorneys filed the first metal-on-metal hip lawsuit in the United States. Our Firm’s tech-forward approach gives us an edge in preparing these cases for trial and leveraging that preparation for the best possible outcomes. The legal team at mctlaw is licensed to practice law in state, federal, district, and circuit courts throughout the nation. 

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