The Abilify and Abilify Maintena National Class Action is Now Certified
On March 13, 2020, Justice Morgan of the Ontario Superior Court of Justice certified this action as a national class proceeding, and appointed Rochon Genova LLP as class counsel. The action is being advanced on behalf of:
- All persons in Canada, including their estates, who were prescribed and ingested Abilify between July 9, 2009 and February 23, 2017;
- All persons in Canada, including their estates, who were prescribed and used Abilify Maintena between February 6, 2014 and December 16, 2016; and
- All persons in Canada who, by virtue of a personal relationship with a person in Canada who was prescribed and used Abilify or Abilify Maintena as described above, are entitled to assert a derivative claim for damages pursuant to Family Law Act, RSO 1990, c. F.3, as amended or equivalent provincial and territorial legislation.
The action alleges that Abilify and Abilify Maintena cause, contribute to or exacerbate the following compulsive behaviours and impulse control disorders: compulsive gambling, compulsive shopping, hypersexuality and binge eating. These allegations have not yet been proven.
Class Action Launched On Behalf Of Canadian Users Of Abilify And Abilify Maintena
TORONTO, JUNE 7, 2016 – ROCHON | GENOVA LLP has commenced a proposed national class action on behalf of Canadian users of the prescription drugs Abilify and Abilify Maintena.
Abilify is an antipsychotic medication indicated for the treatment of Schizophrenia, Bipolar I Disorder and Major Depressive Disorder. Since its approval in 2009, Abilify has become one of the most widely prescribed antipsychotic drugs in Canada and worldwide, with the number of Canadian prescriptions increasing from approximately 3000 in 2010 to over 1 million in 2013.
Dopamine agonists such as Abilify and Abilify Maintena have been scientifically linked to an increase in compulsive behaviours, including compulsive gambling, binge-eating, compulsive shopping/spending, and hypersexuality. A safety review conducted by the European Medicines Agency established a connection between Abilify use and compulsive gambling, resulting in revisions to the European product labeling in October 2012. No warning was included in the Canadian product monograph for Abilify until November 2, 2015 when Health Canada confirmed the link between the use of Abilify and an increased risk of compulsive gambling and hypersexuality.
The proposed class action, filed with the Ontario Superior Court of Justice, alleges, among other things, that the pharmaceutical companies responsible for manufacturing and marketing Abilify and Abilify Maintena – Bristol-Myers Squibb, Otsuka Pharmaceuticals, and Lundbeck – knew, or ought to have known, that the drugs cause or materially increase the risk of developing compulsive behaviours, yet failed to disclose such risk. The claim alleges that the drug makers’ failure to warn Canadians of these risks resulted in significant harm to the plaintiffs and class members.
Joel Rochon, a partner at ROCHON | GENOVA LLP, stated, “Canadians have a right to be informed about the risks associated with the prescription medication that they use. Failure to provide adequate and timely warnings can have serious consequences. In this case, the plaintiff needlessly lost over $250,000 through compulsive gambling, which ceased immediately after he stopped taking Abilify.”
The claims have not yet been proven in court. For information about the proposed class action please contact Jon Sloan at (416) 363-1867 or 1-866-881-2292.
ROCHON | GENOVA LLP
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Toronto, Ontario M5H 2K1
Telephone: (416) 363-1867 or toll-free: 1-866-881-2292
Website address: www.rochongenova.com