In a pre-trial order issued on December 30, 2020 the Florida federal judge overseeing the 3M earplugs litigation consolidated three bellwether cases and set trial dates for the five cases that were part of Bellwether Group A and the subject of a December 7, 2020 Motion for Consolidation filed by the Plaintiffs.
In the most recent order, U.S. Judge M. Casey Rodgers agreed with the plaintiffs that three of the cases had substantial overlap in the issues, facts, witnesses and evidence, and state laws and that consolidating those cases would avoid repetition and result in significant efficiencies in the process. She noted that any potential for prejudice or jury confusion could be addressed with trial management and jury instructions. Judge Rodgers did recognize the benefit of trying some individual cases and ordered that two of the cases would be assigned separate trial dates.
Judge Rodgers has set a trial date of April 5-30, 2021 for the three consolidated cases and trial dates of May 17-28 and June 7-18 for those two cases scheduled to be tried separately. A combined pretrial conference for all Trial Group A cases will proceed the week of March 15, 2021.
In re: 3M Combat Arms Earplug Products Liability Litigation, case number 3:19-md-02885, in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Florida.