Are you eligible to join the class action against the makers of the Nurofen Specific Pain range?

A class action has been issued in the Federal Court against pharmaceutical company Reckitt Benckiser, the makers of Nurofen Specific Pain range of tablets.

This follows a judgment by the Federal Court brought by the Australian Competition & Consumer Commission where it was found that the makers of Nurofen had engaged in misleading or deceptive conduct. It was found that the packaging of the Specific Pain range claimed the products were ‘specially formulated’ to treat targeted pain when in fact the tablets all contained the same active ingredient, ibuprofen lysine, which cannot be said to treat a specific condition better than any other.

On 31 July 2017 it was reported that the company agreed to settle the matter, subject to approval of the Federal Court, and pay $3.5 million into a fund to be administered by an independent third party and distributed to eligible class members.

Consumers who purchased the Nurofen Specific Pain range products between 1 January 2011 and 31 December 2015 may register a claim for compensation from the settlement fund.

Class actions (known as “representative proceedings”) were initially introduced to provide access to justice for people who may otherwise be unable to afford to pursue their claim if they had to do so alone. However, it is now common for class actions to be brought to enable a more efficient and cost effective pursuit of a claim against a large company.

To be able to commence a class action there must be at least seven people with claims against the same person. The claims must give rise to a 'substantial common issue of law or fact'.

In some cases, where there have been less than the required number of claimants, litigation can still be successfully run on behalf as individual claims.

The person that commences the class action must describe the class of people being represented. They can do this without knowing who may actually fall into the class. Individual members of the class can 'opt out' of the class by filing a Notice with the Court.

Lawyers in DSS Law’s Litigation team have experience in advising potential class members and those defending class actions.

Kaye Griffiths Kaye Griffiths 15/08/2017

Disclaimer

DSS Law insight articles are intended to provide commentary and general information. They should not be relied upon as formal legal advice. If you would like specific advice relating to this topic, please contact DSS Law on epost@dsslaw.com.au.