High court's 'Wyeth' ruling on federal pre-emption a dramatic 'sea shift'

, The National Law Journal

Federal pre-emption — a widely used and often effective defense by big business against state tort lawsuits — will be a much harder argument to win because of the U.S. Supreme Court recent ruling in Wyeth v. Levine, and not just in suits against the pharmaceutical industry, but in a broad swath of suits involving regulated industries — from railroad cars to pesticides to consumer products, according to plaintiffs' and defense attorneys. "This is a sea shift," said plaintiffs' counsel Sol Weiss. "Pre-emption as a defense is going to be much more difficult without express written language in the congressional act."

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