David B. Sudzus advises clients on products liability, mass tort, pharmaceutical, medical device and asbestos litigation, class actions and e-discovery matters. He serves as a vice chair of the Products Liability Practice Group.
Dave represents manufacturers of drugs, medical devices and other products in single and multidistrict cases throughout the country. In addition, he advises companies in preparing on-line content, product manuals and warning labels and in developing and implementing complaint handling procedures and product-recall programs to help clients guard against future claims and position themselves strategically to defend their products if litigation arises. In the area of mass tort litigation, he represents clients throughout Illinois and the country, and currently serves on National Coordinating Counsel teams in multidistrict litigation that includes more than 10,000 cases. Dave currently serves as lead defense counsel in a pending Illinois mass tort proceeding, and has previously served as designated defense liaison counsel and as lead defense counsel for defense groups in litigation pending in Illinois and New York state courts. He also has served as regional counsel for clients involved in the asbestos and benzene litigations.
Dave has extensive trial experience in drug and medical device cases, as well as in preparing and arguing substantive motions before the courts. He is involved in preparing and overseeing written discovery responses, including large-scale productions of more than one million documents. He is also experienced in taking depositions of fact and expert witnesses for opposing parties and in preparing company and expert witnesses for deposition and trial testimony.
He has a long history of representing defendants in both the Madison County and Cook County, Ill. asbestos litigation. He has experience defending manufacturers of asbestos-containing products and clients involved in asbestos premises liability claims.
Dave has also handled a wide range of consumer class-action cases, including those involving consumer electronics, personal hand-held devices, children’s bath products, and over-the-counter homeopathic remedies. In addition, Dave has prosecuted and defended a variety of commercial disputes.
Dave is a regular speaker and panelist on topics such as controlling the effect of social media on products liability litigation, liability and policy issues associated with the use of autonomous vehicles, guidelines and liability issues relating to medical apps, federal preemption, product recalls, Medicare/Medicaid reporting and biopharmaceuticals. These engagements include recent presentations as a speaker and panelist at the American Conference Institute’s Drug and Medical Device Litigation seminar, ABA Tort Trial & Insurance Practice Section’s CLE Meeting of the Toxic Torts and Environmental Law Committee Program a Law Bulletin Publishing Case Evaluation seminar.
Dave is a member of the firm’s Public Interest Committee and is co-chair of the Chicago office Pro Bono Committee and assists the Chicago office internal Hiring committee. He also is an originating member of the firm’s Electronic Discovery & Data Management team.
- Successfully pursued and argued a motion to dismiss all claims directed against a retailer and manufacturer of hooded sweatshirts in a product liability claim pending in the Circuit Court of Cook County, Ill.
- Successful coordination of the national defense of a silicone raw material manufacturer in silicone-gel breast implant litigation.
- Successful representation of a manufacturer of latex gloves in products liability litigation, including serving on the National Coordinating Counsel team.
Dave defends clients from initiation of the case through trial. His recent engagements include:
- Lead Defense Counsel in Illinois for ongoing hip replacement litigation.
- Part of the National Coordinating Counsel team in ongoing infant Tylenol and children’s ibuprofen litigation.
- Local Illinois Counsel and member of the trial team in defense of a Fentanyl pain patch manufacturer.
- Part of trial teams which achieved recent defense verdicts on behalf of a manufacturer of hip replacements in the Circuit Court of Cook County, Illinois and a manufacturer of an over the counter ibuprofen product in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois.
- Recently second-chaired a trial in the defense of an over the counter acetaminophen pain relief medication in the Superior Court of the State of New Jersey, Atlantic City before Judge Carol E. Higbee.
- Successful defenses of manufacturers of various products including a children’s vaccine, a chemical sterilization product, and pesticides.
Dave has handled a wide range of consumer class-action cases, including those involving consumer electronics, personal hand-held devices, children’s bath products, and over-the-counter homeopathic remedies.
- Obtained summary judgment for the manufacturer of children’s bath products, defeating efforts by plaintiffs to establish putative nationwide class action litigation involving these products.
- Obtained summary judgment for the manufacturer of a hand-held personal electronic device, defeating alleged consumer class action claims and efforts to establish a statewide class of consumers.
Dave has experience in handling a variety of commercial disputes, including the successful representation of rap artists and doom metal musicians. His experience includes:
- Representation of doom metal musicians in a trademark dispute involving their respective band names.
- Representation of a Chicago-based musician in a trademark dispute involving the infringement of his stage name by a professional athlete and his agents.
- Representation of three rap artists whose names and likenesses were misappropriated by the National Tobacco Co., a subsidiary of Phillip Morris, for use on a web site.
Throughout his career, Dave has handled a myriad of pro bono matters including those involving protection of child custody rights, renter’s rights, prisoner’s rights, securing safe immigration status, preparing estate and living will documents, assisting in expungement of prior criminal records and protecting the intellectual property rights of musicians and artists. He also continues to supervise pro bono matters managed by other attorneys in the firm and assists in managing a regular clinic which the firm operates in connection with local nonprofit Chicago Volunteer Legal Services. Dave is co-chair of the Chicago office Pro Bono Committee and is a member of the firm’s Public Interest Committee.
- Northwestern University School of Law, J.D., 1990
- Benedictine University, B.A., 1987, magna cum laude
- U.S. Supreme Court
- U.S. Court of Appeals, Seventh Circuit
- U.S. District Court, Northern District of Illinois, Trial Bar
- American Bar Association
- Chicago Bar Association
- Defense Research Institute
- International Association of Defense Counsel
- Public Interest Law Initiative, Board of Directors