Chantix Lawyer Files Suit on Behalf of Plaintiff Who Contemplated Suicide

Seth Harris | May 7th, 2012

A Chantix lawyer has filed a complaint on behalf of Terry Smith, a Missouri man who alleges he was injured after using the widely prescribed smoking cessation drug. The case will be joined to the ongoing Chantix multidistrict litigation (MDL) in Alabama. Smith began using Chantix as prescribed by his physician on October 19, 2007. According to the April 30, 2012 complaint, Smith’s use of the medication caused him serious complications, including suicidal ideations.

Missouri man seeks recovery for Chantix suicide ideation

The multi-count complaint alleges causes of action including gross negligence, unjust enrichment, fraudulent concealment, and breach of warranties. Through his Chantix attorney, Smith is seeking both compensatory and punitive damages from Pfizer, Inc., the drug’s manufacturer.

Wide range of Chantix side effects alleged in MDL

The Chantix MDL currently consists of approximately 275 pending cases in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Alabama. The MDL plaintiffs allege a range of severe injuries from their use of the medication. The side effects at issue include mood disorders such as depression, as well as uncharacteristic behavioral changes such as hostility, Chantix aggressive behavior, rage, and agitation. Many plaintiffs who attempted to quit smoking using the drug, like Mr. Smith, reportedly experienced suicidal ideation, attempted suicide, or committed suicide.

Several of the pending MDL cases are wrongful death actions brought by a Chantix lawyer on behalf of the estates of individuals who committed Chantix suicide. In addition to psychological injuries, Chantix side effects also include physical effects such as heart arrhythmia, diabetes, muscle disorders, seizures, and vision problems.

Chantix suicide bellwether cases set for trial

On March 16, 2012, District Court Judge Inge Johnson, who is overseeing the MDL, set the schedule for the initial Chantix bellwether trials. Among the eight cases selected for the trial pool are two wrongful death actions apparently arising from Chantix suicide. The first of these, Judy Ann Whitely, as trustee of next-of-kin Mark Alan Whitely v. Pfizer, Inc., is expected to go to trial on October 22, 2012.

Cases not selected as bellwether cases and not settled will eventually be remanded to their court of origin for trial. Absent trial or Chantix settlement, Mr. Smith’s trial will be held in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Missouri.