Simmons Hanley Conroy
As a named shareholder of Simmons Hanly Conroy, Ms. Conroy is an experienced litigator who has developed a superb national reputation as a skilled strategist, trial lawyer and negotiator over her thirty year career. For many years, Ms. Conroy acted as national trial and coordinating defense counsel to a multi-national corporation and several of its subsidiaries. In recent years, she has represented plaintiffs exclusively in a wide variety of products liability matters.
Ms. Conroy’s practice currently focuses on various complex civil cases, including a high profile sex abuse case against multiple Catholic institutions and litigation against Volkswagen on behalf of several thousand plaintiffs who were affected by the German automaker’s recent emissions scandal.
Ms. Conroy has a track record for standing up for the rights of individuals and families harmed by corporate wrongdoing. She has recovered millions in verdicts and settlements for those injured by unsafe consumer products, including victims of 9/11, families impacted by Toyota’s recent unintended acceleration malfunction, and thousands of young women who suffered heart attacks and other cardiovascular injuries as a result of taking Yaz, a heavily marketed birth control manufactured by the Bayer corporation. She currently represents multiple individuals who were injured by DePuy artificial hips and pelvic repair system materials.
Protecting Rights of Patients Injured by Hip Implants
In 2016, Ms. Conroy helped secure a staggering $1 billion Texas federal jury verdict in the third bellwether trial involving Johson & Johnson’s DePuy Pinnacle Hip Implant. The trial consolidated 6 plaintiffs’ cases and the verdict came after key findings were presented, including information that Johnson & Johnson aggressively promoted the DePuy device through kickback payments to surgeons. This verdict followed a $502 million verdict awarded earlier in the year on behalf of five plaintiffs in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Dallas Division. In this trial, Ms. Conroy presented ground-breaking evidence of instances in which surgeons lied about clinical results and forged consent forms for patients implanted with the product. The fourth bellwether trial is scheduled for later in 2017.
Litigating on Behalf of Volkswagen Owners and Dealers
A member of the Volkswagen MDL Plaintiffs’ Executive Committee, Ms. Conroy has been on the front lines of this litigation. In 2016, she helped secure a $14.7 billion global settlement on behalf of 2.0-liter diesel Volkswagen and Audi vehicle owners.
Ms. Conroy also leads the firm’s efforts in representing dealers who were in competition with Volkswagen and lost sales as a direct result of the company’s misleading advertising efforts and falsified emissions reports.
Fighting the Opioid Epidemic
Ms. Conroy and fellow Shareholder Paul Hanly filed cases in 2016 on behalf of New York counties facing an opioid epidemic. The lawsuits allege the opioid manufacturers caused the epidemic through deceptive marketing campaigns misrepresenting the dangers of long-term prescription opioid use. New York counties incurred millions in costs related to healthcare, criminal justice and victimization, and lost productivity because of the epidemic.
Helping Victims of Sexual Abuse
In 2013, Ms. Conroy helped achieve a landmark settlement of $12 million on behalf of 24 Haitian boys at an orphanage in Haiti who were sexually abused by convicted pedophile Douglas Perlitz. She has since filed over 100 additional cases on behalf of other victims. Claims in all the cases involve improper supervision of Perlitz’s activities as he operated the school for underprivileged boys in Cap Haitien, Haiti, from the late 1990s until around 2010, during which time Perlitz raped and otherwise sexually abused the victims. In 2011, Perlitz was convicted of sexual abuse and currently is serving a 19-year, seven-month federal prison sentence in Seagoville, Texas. The settlement was paid by the Society of Jesus of New England; Fairfield University; the Order of Malta; Hope Carter, a volunteer at the Haitian facility; and Father Paul Carrier.
Standing with Victims of 9/11
Ms. Conroy has represented several thousand victims of the September 11, 2001 tragedy in a multidistrict action against the financial sponsors of terrorism. Representing nearly 3,000 of the September 11 victims who died on that day, Ms. Conroy and Simmons Hanly Conroy continue to file claims against financial sponsors and the government of Saudi Arabia, and other alleged charities which supported the acts of terror committed by directly providing funds from the Middle East to the hijackers involved. In a separate set of negligence litigations against the airlines and airport security companies on behalf of 50 families who lost their loved ones on the four 9/11 aircrafts, Ms. Conroy helped forge settlements that totaled in the hundreds of millions of dollars.
Litigation to Keep Products Safe
Ms. Conroy serves or has served as a member of Plaintiffs’ Steering or Executive Committees in nearly a dozen multidistrict pharmaceutical litigations. Since 2006, she is credited with orchestrating the settlements of thousands of pharmaceutical cases for a total recovery for the firm’s clients that exceeds $800 million. Throughout much of 2008, Ms. Conroy was engaged in negotiating the terms of the landmark, $894 million settlement of Bextra and Celebrex cases against Pfizer.