Please note: We appreciate your interest in claims for 3M Earplugs. We are no longer taking 3M case submissions at this time. Please don’t hesitate to contact us if you have any questions about any other legal issues, recalls, faulty products, dangerous drugs, or defective medical equipment.
For decades, the American multinational conglomerate corporation sold its Combat Arms Earplugs, Version 2, to the Federal government as standard issue hearing protection devices for active military service members.
Veterans are now responding to the fact that the CAEV2 earplugs are defective, resulting in hearing problems that the earplugs were supposed to thwart and that the manufacturer knew about these dangerous defects and failed to disclose these hazards to their consumers.
Because of the hearing damage this defect caused, thousands of military veterans are taking legal action against 3M. The 3M defective earplug lawsuits further allege that 3M behaved unlawfully deceptively with its fitting instructions and testing procedures.
Faulty 3m Earplugs
The 3M Combat Arms Earplugs (CAEv2) were made and distributed by Aearo Technologies and parent company 3M. They were promoted as a revolutionary product that could drastically improve soldiers’ hearing protection during combat.
The dual-ended earplug design allowed the earplug to be worn in two different orientations – one of which would block all sound, and the other would block loud noises while still permitting conversation and other related sounds to be heard.
What Went Wrong?
Unfortunately, there were design flaws from the beginning. These earplugs have been subject to numerous complaints and accusations of failure to adequately protect soldiers’ ears. They are often too short for proper insertion once placed in the ear canals of certain individuals. This prevents an adequate seal that is required for successful noise blocking.
Regrettably, this defective product fails to provide proper hearing protection for military personnel and can thus put them at risk for various types of hearing issues or even permanent hearing loss due to this design defect.
Am I Eligible to File a Lawsuit Against 3m for Hearing Damage Related to Defective Earplugs?
The following requirements must be met in order to be qualified to bring a 3M earplug lawsuit:
- You must be a veteran of the U.S. military who served between 2003-2015
- You must have incurred hearing injuries as a result of using the 3M Dual-Ended Combat Arms Earplugs while serving in the military
There may also be grounds for suing 3M if civilians who received Combat Arms Earplugs, utilized them, and suffered hearing loss as a result of the product’s flaws.
Those who have suffered deafness, tinnitus, partial hearing loss, or other hearing complications due to their use of these earplugs can contact an experienced personal injury or product liability attorney.
Our legal team will listen to your story and advise you on the potential legal remedies available. We are eager to help those harmed by these dangerous products, and we can assist you with a hearing loss claim.
The Judicial Panel Grouped the Lawsuits and Sent Them to a Multidistrict Litigation Court
Because so many individual plaintiffs had filed complaints against 3M for their defective military earplugs, a federal Judicial Panel decided on April 3, 2019, to centralize all the cases that had been filed in districts around the country and transfer them to a single Multidistrict Litigation Court.
The decision to transfer was based on the Panel’s acknowledgment that all the pending actions against 3M posed the same questions of fact: that the defendant sold earplugs to the government for use by the plaintiffs, fully knowing that the devices were defective, and ultimately causing hearing loss and other ear-related problems for the plaintiffs.
The same issues and questions of fact about the “design, testing, sale, and marketing” of 3M’s Combat Arms Earplugs would have been presented, argued, and resolved in pretrial hearings across all cases. As such, it made sense for the Judicial Panel to group the cases for the purpose of pretrial efforts and promote an avoidance of case backlog.
All parties in the cases will enjoy greater efficiency because the process of discovery will be handled once, with consistent results across all cases. The same arguments regarding evidence admissibility and other pretrial issues will not need to be made repeatedly. From an economic standpoint, by grouping the cases for the purpose of pretrial motions, both parties, as well as the judiciary, benefit from better use of their resources.
As a result, the 3M Combat Arms Earplug Products Liability Litigation, MDL No. 2885, was transferred to the United States District Court Northern District of Florida for pretrial proceedings.
Parties Involved in the MDL
The Transfer Order executing the MDL appropriation specified that eight legal actions had been filed in four districts when the Order was issued. The actions named in the Order are as follows:
- Central District of California
KENNEDY v. 3M COMPANY, ET AL., C.A. No. 5:19-0012
- District of Minnesot
CIACCIO v. 3M COMPANY, ET AL., C.A. No. 0:19-00179
PEEK v. 3M COMPANY, ET AL., C.A. No. 0:19-00192
LARKIN v. 3M COMPANY, ET AL., C.A. No. 0:19-00194
PULLIUM v. 3M COMPANY, ET AL., C.A. No. 0:19-00603
- Western District of Oklahoma
STINE v. 3M COMPANY, C.A. No. 5:19-00058
WERNER v. 3M COMPANY, C.A. No. 5:19-00059
- Western District of Texas
ROWE v. 3M COMPANY, C.A. No. 6:19-00019
Six hundred thirty-five federal actions had been filed in 33 districts when the Transfer Order was set in motion.
What Multidistrict Litigation Means
When multiple, complex, federal civil cases share a common set of questions of fact, a Judicial Panel may elect to transfer all the cases to one federal district court. The Multidistrict Litigation Court (MLC), as this court is called, exists to streamline all the pretrial proceedings in the collection of federal cases for the purpose of efficiency, economy, and consistency.
The MLC handles all pretrial proceedings. It can authorize settlements of some cases, and it can dismiss other cases. The cases that are left over are sent back to the court where they were originally filed, where they will proceed with a trial. According to the American Bar Association, few cases are actually remanded back to their original forum.
Individuals who used the defective combat earplugs and suffered hearing loss or other hearing-related issues after using 3M Combat Arms earplugs may qualify to file a 3M defective earplug lawsuit or join ongoing multidistrict litigation.
Learn More About Ongoing Earplug Claims and 3m Combat Ear Plug Lawsuits by Contacting Us Today
For over a decade, veterans have been filing lawsuits against 3M for hearing damage caused by these defective products. In response to the influx of such cases, the United States District Court in Florida has transferred all pending cases to 3M Combat Arms Earplug Products Liability Litigation, MDL No. 2885. This centralized team is set to handle all pre-trial proceedings and streamline the judicial process.
If you are a veteran who has suffered from any form of hearing loss or tinnitus due to using 3M earplugs in service, it’s not too late for you to join ongoing earplugs litigation. Zanes Law is here to help with your case. We provide consultations and reviews so that you can understand your rights and proceed with maximum confidence.
Talk with us for more information about how we can assist you in recovering losses through a defective 3M earplug lawsuit. A 3M defective earplugs lawsuit lawyer at Zanes Law can help you recover the compensation you deserve. There is no financial risk, as we can accept your claim on a contingency fee basis. Call us today for a free consultation.