Orange County Business Journal

Allergan Gets New Trial in Botox Case

Vita Reed Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Irvine drug maker Allergan Inc. has won a new trial in a case brought by a Virginia man who won a $212 million jury award last year after he said he got permanent brain damage after Botox injections.

U.S. District Judge Robert Payne in Richmond, Va., ruled that Allergan deserved a new trial because it should have been made clear to the jury that Allergan couldn’t add a so-called “black-box” warning to Botox package inserts on health dangers without prior Food and Drug Administration approval.

“This was prejudice on a core issue respecting Allergan’s liability and the only remedy for it is a new trial,” Payne wrote about the case, which was originally brought by Douglas Ray Jr. in 2010. Ray’s jury award had already been slashed to $13 million under Virginia state law.

Ray’s lawyer, Ray Chester, told Reuters that he was “disappointed in the decision” and thought that the verdict should have stood.

Allergan spokeswoman Cathy Taylor said though the company’s sympathetic to Ray, it’s pleased Payne granted its motion for a new trial, “and we look forward to re-trying the case.”

A hearing for the case is scheduled for June 9. Payne also ordered Ray and Allergan to schedule a settlement conference.