Verdicts & Settlements

Class Members Alerted Via YouTube

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Lawyers are using an animated chipmunk and YouTube to reach class members entitled to proceeds of a class-action settlement funded by the maker of Paxil.

Two videos posted on the YouTube Web site alert viewers that they may be entitled to settlement cash, the National Law Journal reports. The $48 million fund was established to settle a suit that contended the antidepressant was improperly marketed to children.

One seven-second video features a chipmunk and the message, “If you took Paxil, you could get $100 or more.” A 90-second video shows a confused teenager, and tells parents they may be entitled to settlement money if their child took the drug.

Both videos recommend visiting The videos are the result of brainstorming at Public Citizen, a consumer advocacy group that helped reach an October settlement in the case.

Dwight Davis, an attorney for GlaxoSmithKline, emphasized that the drugmaker had admitted no wrongdoing in the settlement. He said he did not object to the videos unless they are misleading.

“This is a free country, and they’re certainly free to do something like this,” he told the legal newspaper. But “if they’re suggesting that this child [in the video] is wandering around in a fog because they used Paxil, then we may very well have something to say about that, because that’s misleading,” he said.

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