Debra E. Pole is a partner in Sidley's Los Angeles Litigation group and a former member of the firm's Executive Committee. Ms. Pole trains, supervises and manages a number of lawyers and paraprofessionals in the Products Liability and Mass Torts practice in Los Angeles. Ms. Pole is one of the firm's global leaders in the products liability area and also a member of the firm's West Coast Accounting and Finance Committee. She is a seasoned trial lawyer with experience in multi-district litigation (MDL), class actions and products liability litigation. Ms. Pole has extensive jury trial experience in both federal and state courts involving mass tort litigation, class actions, complex litigation and Daubert proceedings. Ms. Pole's noteworthy experience includes:
- Acted as trial counsel in the first bellwether case to be tried in the Illinois In re Actos Litigation coordinated proceedings, Diane Whitlatch v. Takeda Pharmaceuticals America, Inc., et al.
- Was part of a trial team that won nonsuit for Janssen Pharmaceuticals, a unit of Johnson & Johnson, in the seventh Risperdal case to go to trial in the Pennsylvania Court of Common Pleas.
- Was part of the trial team in a case for Johnson & Johnson in St. Louis regarding talcum powder, before the Court declared a mistrial.
- Acted as National Coordinating Counsel for defendants in the high profile silicone breast implant litigation (in MDL and state coordinated proceedings) and the diet drug litigation.
- Lead trial counsel in HRT and other bone drug litigation, drug infusion litigation and other pharmaceutical and medical device litigation.
- Trial counsel in mask and respirator litigation (asbestos and silica) and in dietary supplement litigation.
Ms. Pole has supervised numerous defense law firms, both domestically and internationally, that were involved in complex pharmaceutical and medical device litigation and has had responsibility for national financial management of mass tort litigation. Because of her sound decision-making ability, analytical, problem-solving and strong interpersonal skills, companies have entrusted Ms. Pole and the firm to manage their mass torts litigation by outsourcing such litigation to them for local and trial counsel assignments, expert witness retention, document analysis and production, early case assessment, alternative dispute resolution, settlements, trials and overall litigation strategy. Companies planning to introduce new products into the marketplace have relied on Ms. Pole for products liability counseling and for her deep experience in early assessment and resolution of products liability matters. She has briefed major appellate matters, provided strategic advice to defendants in multi-district litigation and examined independent medical and scientific expert witnesses appointed by an MDL court pursuant to FRE 706.
Last updated: July 2018