Panish Shea & Boyle LLP attorney Pete Kaufman specializes in mass tort pharmaceutical and medical device litigation. Formerly a shareholder in the Florida-based national mass tort litigation firm Levin, Papantonio P.A., Mr. Kaufman joined Panish Shea & Boyle LLP in 2010 and has recovered hundreds of millions of dollars for his clients.
Recognized as a Best Lawyer in America in the areas of Plaintiffs Personal Injury Litigation and Mass Tort Litigation/Class Actions, Mr. Kaufman has tried cases in numerous pharmaceutical and medical device litigations including Accutane, Vioxx, Phenylpropanolamine (PPA), Fen-Phen/diet drugs, Adderall and the ASR Hip Replacement Device. Since 2001, he has received verdicts in excess of $50 million, settlements of nearly $300 million and played a central role in a number of national pharmaceutical and device litigations.
Currently, Mr. Kaufman represents plaintiffs in cases against Olympus relating to the CRE Superbug infection that was spread as a result of the manufacturer’s TJF-Q180V Duodenoscope and serves as Liaison and Lead Plaintiffs Counsel in the California Judicial Council Coordinated Proceeding (“JCCP”) 4886 Olympus Duodenoscope cases.
Mr. Kaufman also represents plaintiffs in cases against Allergan resulting from the July 2019 worldwide recall of Allergan BIOCELL® textured breast implants and tissue expanders due to an uncommon incidence of Breast Implant-Associated Anaplastic Large Cell Lymphoma (BIA-ALCL), a rare cancer of the immune system. In February 2020, he was appointed to serve on the Plaintiffs Executive Committee in the Allergan BIOCELL Textured Breast Implant Products Liability Litigation.
Previously, Mr. Kaufman was a member of the leadership in the ASR and Pinnacle Hip JCCPs, served on the Plaintiff’s Steering Committee for the Pinnacle Hip Multi-District Litigation (MDL), and he was the co-chair of the Trial Package committee for the Vioxx MDL, which resulted in a $4.7 billion national settlement. He also served on the Discovery and Science committees in the Vioxx litigation and tried Vioxx cases in New Jersey, Louisiana, Florida and California. In the Bextra/Celebrex litigation, Mr. Kaufman was a member of the MDL Plaintiff’s Steering Committee and resolved hundreds of cases involving plaintiffs who suffered heart attacks and strokes. In the coordinated Baycol litigation, in state court in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Mr. Kaufman served on the discovery and deposition committees, worked with leading medical experts on a major national class action case, and settled nearly 100 individual cases. He has also resolved claims related to Stevens-Johnson Syndrome, the drugs Rezulin and Ketek, for liver related injuries, Accutane, and numerous other personal injury cases.
In 2019, Mr. Kaufman won appeals in Pennsylvania Superior Court finding that a Japanese manufacturer was subject to personal jurisdiction in Pennsylvania, and that cases involving it and its American sister corporations had to proceed in Philadelphia, after defendants sought to have the case transferred. Vaughan Estate of Vaughan v. Olympus America, Inc. (Pa. Super. Ct. 2019) 208 A.3d 66, reargument denied (June 11, 2019). In 2009, Mr. Kaufman handled one of the first cases in the country against a generic drug manufacturer, in which the court held that generic manufacturers of drugs have the same liability as brand-name manufacturers, Munroe v. Barr Laboratories Inc., 2009 WL 4047949 (N.D.Fla., 2009). Currently, Mr. Kaufman’s practice is focused primarily on medical device litigation.
In addition to his work in mass tort litigation, Mr. Kaufman handles catastrophic personal injury cases throughout California. Since 2017, he has resolved cases involving school districts (2019, Ventura Unified School District – $16,000,000), agricultural and trucking companies (2018, Bakersfield – $21,000,000), medical malpractice, including multiple cases involving Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center totaling $16,000,000 (2017, 2018). In 2017, Mr. Kaufman won a verdict finding the owners of a Palm Springs motel were personally responsible for the death of a guest who was tragically killed by carbon monoxide poisoning.
A frequent speaker on pharmaceutical litigation, covering topics such as scientific evidence, trial preparation and case selection criteria, Mr. Kaufman received his Bachelor of Arts degree, with honors, from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and his law degree from University of Florida Fredric G. Levin College of Law. Mr. Kaufman is a veteran of the United States Army and a graduate of the Defense Language Institute. He served with the 3d Armored Division, 533d Military Intelligence Battalion in Operations Desert Shield and Desert Storm.
Mr. Kaufman is licensed to practice law in California and Florida and before the United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit, the United States District Court for the Central District of California and the United States District Court for the Northern and Middle Districts of Florida.