A Creditors’ Committee created as part of bankruptcy proceedings initiated by the New England Compounding Center (NECC) and its principals responsible for injuries and death related to a tainted injectable medication has established a $100 million fund to pay those who suffered injuries or death from exposure to a fungus causing some to develop a rare form of meningitis. Monetary contributions and commitments for the settlement fund have come multiples sources, including the company’s owners and various insurance companies.
The settlement comes as a surprise to many who believed that the bankruptcy filing and the limited assets of NECC and its principals would be woefully inadequate to compensate the large number of victims exposed or potentially exposed to the contaminated steroid injectable used primarily to treat patients suffering joint pain and inflammation. The Creditors’ Committee succeeded in obtaining financial contributions from a number of insurance companies, including some who are not directed related to the operation of NECC but whose insureds faced potential liability for being in the distribution chain of the tainted medication despite having no actual knowledge the medication was tainted.
Despite the recent announcement of the settlement fund in late December 2013, the deadline to file claims against NECC for those suffering from personal injury, death, distress or other harm is very short. The claims deadline for filing a “Proof of Claim” and “Personal Injury or Wrongful Death Claim Information Form” Addendum is Jan. 15, 2014 at 4 p.m. Both forms must be filed with the attorneys for the Creditors’ Committee and not with the United States Bankruptcy Court for the District of Massachusetts by the stated deadline.
This claims filing procedure is different than the standard procedure for filing Proofs of Claim in bankruptcy cases with the bankruptcy court having jurisdiction over the case. This unique claims filing procedure is designed to prevent public disclosure of otherwise confidential medical information of injury claimants.
Claim forms are available for download from the Creditors’ Committee website here. Claims cannot be filed electronically or by fax and must be received (and not postmarked) by the claims deadline.
Any person who actually or potentially sustained any harm as a result of exposure to the tainted injectable should file a claim. According to information available from the Creditors’ Committee website,”any person who suffered any injury from exposure to any NECC product or otherwise claims to have a right to payment of money from NECC may file a claim.” In addition, “any person or family member who claims to have suffered any personal and non-personal injury or distress as a result of exposure to NECC products, including loss of spousal and parental relations due to injury or death as well as monetary claims can file a claim.”
Should you need assistance with filing a claim before the deadline, please contact the attorneys at Belsky, Weinberg & Horowitz. The firm’s products liability and bankruptcy attorneys are uniquely qualified to take legal action to preserve and protect your legal rights. Please call us at 410-234-0100 for help with this time-critical matter.