fbpx
News
September 21, 2016

Too Much of a Good Thing? Lawsuit Alleges Eye Drop Dispenser is Too Big

Some lawsuits just make you want to roll your eyes. Take, for instance, two different cases over eye drops.

In one case, a federal class action lawsuit that has been certified against several drug companies, claiming that the dispenser on their prescription eye drop bottles is too large, causing excessive drops to roll down the plaintiffs’ cheeks. 

The suit against Pfizer, Merck & Co., Allergan, and others, alleges the companies engaged in unfair and deceptive practices by selling eye drop dispensers for glaucoma with larger than necessary tips, so customers would use the product faster. 

The lead plaintiffs in the lawsuit claim they used these eye drop bottles for 10 years and that a bottle with a smaller tip would have lasted them longer and saved thousands of dollars. 

The judge couldn’t see clearly to dismiss the case and instead has allowed these cries over spilled eye drops to proceed — which is different decision than that of another judge in New Jersey, who has twice dismissed a virtually identical case on the grounds that the plaintiffs can’t prove any harm. 

The plaintiffs in that case are appealing the judge’s decision. What’s more, a national non-profit who represents older Americans has involved itself in the case.  In a court filing last month, the group argued in support of the plaintiffs and claimed that the “wasted” drops are having an effect on healthcare costs for the elderly.

Yes, you read that correctly – they are blaming supposedly larger-than-necessary eye drops for rising medical costs.

The New Jersey judge saw crocodile tears in the claims, ruling that the plaintiffs have not presented any cheaper bottle alternatives with smaller tips. As such, claims that the plaintiffs would have saved thousands with another bottle can’t be substantiated and there is no cause for reimbursement. 

Furthermore, the judge said the plaintiffs did not prove that these companies intentionally engaged in deception with the larger tips (a finding that, unfortunately, is not required under most states’ consumer protection acts).

A class action case over the tiny droplet of liquid that emerge from an eye drop bottle could easily be seen by most as a frivolous lawsuit, but consumer protection acts make this case lucrative for the plaintiffs’ lawyers. 

Meanwhile, the defendant companies are spending valuable time and money to fight this abusive lawsuit — costs that could end up being passed along to consumers. And that’s enough to make anyone cry.

Cookie Notice

By clicking “I Accept”, you agree to the storing of cookies on your device to enhance site navigation, analyze site usage, and assist in our marketing efforts.

Cookie Notice

By clicking “I Accept”, you agree to the storing of cookies on your device to enhance site navigation, analyze site usage, and assist in our marketing efforts. Review Settings