Blackwell Burke P.A. Attorney Charmaine K. Harris represented 3M in the federal Bair HuggerTM Multidistrict Litigation (MDL) where she secured dismissal of a case removed from Oklahoma state court. The case was originally filed in the District Court Comanche County, Oklahoma in 2018 and was successfully removed to the federal District Court of Minnesota as part of the Bair Hugger MDL. Blackwell Burke defeated the MDL in July 2019 with more than 5,000 cases dismissed.
Even though the MDL cases had been dismissed, the court requested additional briefing on subject-matter jurisdiction on the Oklahoma matter. Ms. Harris, along with Blackwell Burke partners Deborah Lewis and Benjamin Hulse, successfully argued that federal jurisdiction existed based on diversity, discrediting Plaintiff’s contention to the contrary. The court granted dismissal of the Oklahoma case in mid-June 2020.
“Our team used creative problem solving and a well-defined strategy to get this result for the client,” said Harris. “It’s an important case, removing another lawsuit that could have taken up significant resources for the client.”
About Charmaine K. Harris
Charmaine K. Harris’s practice focuses on medical device, products liability defense and other complex litigation. She is a lead associate for a Fortune 500 Company defending its product liability and premises liability claims arising in state and federal courts nationwide. In that role, Ms. Harris conducts discovery depositions, represents the client at mediations and negotiates settlements. Ms. Harris is also experienced in defending asbestos and employment-related disputes.
About Benjamin W. Hulse
Benjamin W. Hulse focuses his national practice on class action defense, mass tort defense and commercial litigation. Mr. Hulse is an accomplished class action defense lawyer and has helped build Blackwell Burke P.A. into one of Minnesota’s go-to class action defense firms. His class action and mass tort clients have included leading companies from several different sectors of the economy, including medical devices, food, health and fitness, oil and gas and banking and insurance.
About Deborah E. Lewis
Deborah E. Lewis is an experienced trial attorney focusing on the defense of corporations and health care providers in product liability actions, including MDL and mass tort actions, in industries including pharmaceutical and medical device manufacturers, automobile/component part manufacturers, food manufacturers, retailers and physicians. A former registered nurse, Ms. Lewis’ unique perspectives on product liability and health care matters gains the trust of medical experts and industry leaders as she helps clients develop successful defense strategies. She has been the “go to” counsel for a major medical device and pharmaceutical manufacturer for its product liability lawsuits, defending its matters nationally and internationally.
About Blackwell Burke P.A.
Blackwell Burke is a certified minority-owned trial firm that represents corporate clients in high stakes class actions, mass torts, MDLs and commercial litigation, both at trial and on appeal. The firm has been repeatedly recognized as one of the top litigation defense firms in the country by BTI, Chambers, Best Lawyers and others. Benchmark Litigation named Blackwell Burke the Minnesota Firm of the Year in each of the last three years.