Reset Font to Default Medium Font Larger Font

Commonly Asked Questions


WHY DID I RECEIVE THIS NOTICE?

Answer:

On September 30, 2015, the Court approved or “certified” this case as a class action lawsuit to determine whether or not Sanofi’s alleged conduct violated the federal antitrust laws.

You received this notice because Sanofi’s sales records indicate you purchased Menactra at some point from March 1, 2010 through and including December 31, 2014 and therefore may be a member of the Class certified by the Court for purposes of the Settlement.

As a potential Class Member, you have legal rights and options. This notice explains the lawsuit, the Settlement, your legal rights, what benefits are available, who is eligible for them, and how to get them.

The Court in charge of the case is the U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey, and the case is known as Castro, et al. v. Sanofi Pasteur Inc., No. 11-7178 (D.N.J.). U.S. District Court Judge John Michael Vazquez is overseeing the case. The individuals and entities who brought this suit are called “Plaintiffs,” and the company they sued is called the “Defendant,” which in this case is Sanofi.

WHAT IS THIS LAWSUIT ABOUT?

Answer:

This lawsuit claimed that when Novartis was about to enter the MCV4 Vaccine market with its Menveo vaccine, Sanofi, rather than compete on the merits, engaged in illegal conduct to limit competition. Specifically, the lawsuit claimed that, through a series of contracts and other conduct, Sanofi effectively required certain healthcare providers to buy substantially all of their MCV4 Vaccines from Sanofi or risk paying much higher prices on Sanofi’s entire portfolio of pediatric vaccines. The suit alleged that this conduct foreclosed the entry of a rival MCV4 Vaccine supplier (Novartis) and allowed Sanofi to maintain its monopoly power in the market for MCV4 Vaccines in violation of the federal antitrust laws. The lawsuit alleged that the claimed anticompetitive conduct resulted in artificially inflated prices for Sanofi’s MCV4 Vaccine Menactra and the MCV4 Vaccine Menveo (now sold by GlaxoSmithKline). Sanofi denies these allegations.

Sanofi asserts that its conduct, including its discounting practices, benefits purchasers of MCV4 Vaccines (and consumers more generally) and that it did not engage in any illegal conduct, that its actions did not raise prices to noncompetitive levels, and that any alleged anticompetitive effects from its conduct are outweighed by the conduct’s pro-competitive effects. Sanofi also denies that Novartis’s entry was foreclosed and that it and Novartis would each have lowered vaccines prices if not for the conduct alleged in this lawsuit. Plaintiffs dispute Sanofi’s assertions and defenses.

Following investigation of relevant facts, the completion of fact and expert discovery, and use of independent mediators, but before the Court made any determination about the legality of Sanofi’s alleged conduct, Plaintiffs and Sanofi agreed to the Settlement.

WHY IS THERE A SETTLEMENT?

Answer:

The Court has not decided which side was correct or if any laws were violated. Instead, both sides agreed to settle the case and avoid the cost and risk of trial and appeals that would follow a trial.

This Settlement is the product of extensive negotiations between lawyers for Plaintiffs and Sanofi. The Settlement follows years of extensive litigation. At the time of settlement, discovery was complete and the parties had exchanged expert reports. During discovery, Class Counsel reviewed millions of pages of documents and deposed more than twenty witnesses, including Sanofi’s experts. After years of working on the case, and after thoroughly investigating the complex factual, legal and economic issues involved, Sanofi agreed to pay a total of $61.5 million in cash to resolve the claims the Plaintiffs brought against them.

As a result of the Settlement, Class Members will be guaranteed compensation without undue delay. The Class Representatives and the lawyers representing them and the rest of the Class believe that the $61.5 million cash Settlement is fair and in the best interests of all Class Members.

WHO IS INCLUDED IN THE SETTLEMENT?

Answer:

The Court has certified a Class defined as: “All persons or entities in the United States and its territories that purchase Menactra directly from defendant Sanofi Pasteur Inc. (“Sanofi”) or any of its divisions, subsidiaries, predecessors or affiliates, such as VaxServe, Inc., during the period from March 1, 2010 through and including December 31, 2014 (“Class Period”), and excluding all governmental entities, Sanofi, Sanofi’s divisions, subsidiaries, predecessors, and affiliates, Kaiser Permanente and the Kaiser Foundation (collectively “Kaiser”), and any purchases by entities buying Menactra pursuant to a publicly-negotiated price (i.e., governmental purchasers).”

For example, the Class includes health care providers, such as physicians who purchased Menactra through membership in a physician buying group (“PBG”) or group purchasing organization (“GPO”), health systems, and vaccine distributors and wholesalers.

You are NOT included in the Class if you (a) purchased Menactra indirectly (i.e., through a wholesaler or distributor other than Sanofi’s VaxServe, Inc. or from a physician or hospital); (b) are a government entity; (c) are a division, subsidiary, predecessor, or affiliate of Sanofi; (d) are Kaiser Permanente or the Kaiser Foundation; (e) bought Menactra during the Class Period solely under government-negotiated prices (e.g., government purchasers); or (f) bought Menactra solely before or after the Class Period.

HOW MUCH MONEY WILL BE PROVIDED FOR IN THIS SETTLEMENT?

Answer:

Under the Settlement, Sanofi has agreed to pay $61,500,000 to the Settlement Fund. The money in this fund will be used to pay: (i) the costs of settlement administration and notice as approved by the Court; (ii) attorneys’ fees and expenses, as approved by the Court; and (iii) service awards to the Class Representatives for litigating the lawsuit on behalf of the Class. The Settlement Fund after reduction for those payments is the “Net Settlement Fund.”

HOW DO I ASK FOR MONEY FROM THIS SETTLEMENT/FILE A CLAIM?

Answer:

UPDATE: The deadline to file a Claim has passed.

If you received a claim form in the mail you must complete, sign, date and return the form to the Settlement Administrator postmarked no later than the extended deadline of February 20, 2018 or you may file online at www.MenactraAntitrustLitigationSettlement.com so that the form is completed by 11:59PM Pacific Time on February 20, 2018. To file online you will need your claimant ID number from the claim form.  If you have not received your claim form by December 1, 2017, please reach out to the Settlement Administrator at 1-866-216-0279 for additional information or to update your address.

DO I NEED TO SUBMIT DOCUMENTATION WITH MY CLAIM FORM?

Answer:

You are not required to submit documentation with your Claim Form for it to be considered complete unless you do not agree with the accuracy of the total volume of purchases in Part 2 of your Claim Form.

To the extent that you dispute the sales transaction data supplied by the Settlement Administrator as set forth in Part 2, you must provide the Settlement Administrator with valid documentation in support of the purchase claimed.

Acceptable documentation includes copies of (a) purchase invoices or (b) internal purchase records or ledgers certified by your purchasing (accounts payable) department or an independent accountant. Such documentation must indicate the (a) date of purchase; (b) purchased product was Menactra; (c) supplier; (d) purchaser (including proof that the purchaser is you, your related company or your valid assignor and the purchaser was invoiced by Sanofi for the purchase and appears as “bill to” or “sold to” entity in the transactional data); and (e) the amount of doses purchased. All documentation is subject to review and evaluation by the Settlement Administrator.

MY RECORDS INDICATE MY DOSES PURCHASED WERE HIGHER THAN LISTED IN MY CLAIM FORM. WHY IS THAT?

Answer:

Note that the purchase volume listed in your Claim Form is net of any returns you made. If, after reviewing your records of returns, you still believe that your purchases should be higher, you may dispute the purchase volume by submitting complete documentation of your direct purchases with your Claim Form.

DO I NEED TO COMPLETE THE ASSIGNMENTS PORTION OF THE CLAIM FORM?

Answer:

Only those Class Members that have assignments to report should complete the assignment information. If you are not aware of any assignments related to your Menactra purchases during the Class Period, then you need not complete that section for your Claim to be considered valid.

DO I NEED TO INCLUDE ANY DOCUMENTATION OF MY ASSIGNMENTS?

Answer:

If you indicate you have assigned a portion of your claim to another entity or person, you need not include documentation, but must complete all three requested pieces of information (Value, Assignee, Date). If you indicate you are filing based on assignment, you must include documentation of the assignment received.

CAN ANYONE ELSE FILE A CLAIM FOR ME?

Answer:

There are specialized companies that may offer to fill out and file your claim in return for a percentage of the value of your claim. Before you sign a contract with one of these companies, you should examine the claim-filing process provided here and decide whether it is worth the cost. You can always seek help from the Settlement Administrator or Class Counsel.

HOW MUCH MONEY WILL I GET?

Answer:

Class Members who file a valid claim will receive their pro rata share of the Net Settlement Fund based on: (i) the Class Member’s purchases of Menactra; (ii) the total money available to pay all claims; (iii) the total purchase volume of all valid claims filed; and (iv) the cost of settlement administration and notice, money awarded to the Class Representatives, and attorneys’ fees and expenses as approved by the Court.

Further details are in the Plan of Distribution, which is available on the Court Documents page of this website.

 

WHEN WILL I RECEIVE PAYMENT?

Answer:

There is no date certain for making payments from the Settlement Fund. Updates on the final settlement approval process will be available on this website.

WHAT WILL I BE GIVING UP TO RECEIVE PAYMENT?

Answer:

Unless you exclude yourself, you remain in the Class, and that means you will be required to forego any right to sue, or be part of any other lawsuit against, Sanofi over the “Released Claims.”  The Released Claims are described in Section II (Definitions), paragraph 24 of the Settlement Agreement available on the Court Documents page of this website.

WHAT IF I DO NOT WANT TO BE IN THE CLASS?

Answer:

The deadline to exclude yourself has passed.

If you do not want to be in the Class and receive a payment under the Settlement then you must take steps to exclude yourself from the Class. You must ask to be excluded from the Class if you want to keep the right to sue Sanofi on your own regarding the Released Claims. If you wish to file your own lawsuit against Sanofi after you exclude yourself, you will have to hire and pay your own lawyer (if you decide to retain one), and you will have to prove your claims.

If you exclude yourself from the Class—sometimes called “opting-out” of the Class—you will not be legally bound by the Court’s judgments in this class action, and you will keep any rights you may have to sue Sanofi over the Released Claims. However, if you do exclude yourself, you will not receive any money under the Settlement and Class Counsel will no longer represent you with respect to any claims against Sanofi. If you want to receive money from the Settlement Fund, do not exclude yourself.

HOW DO I ASK TO BE EXCLUDED?

Answer:

The deadline to exclude yourself has passed.

To exclude yourself, or “opt out” from the Class, you must send a written letter to the following address:

Menactra Antitrust Litigation Settlement
c/o Rust Consulting, Inc. - 5203
P.O. Box 2563
Faribault, MN 55021-9563

Your written letter must be postmarked no later than July 10, 2017. You must state that you want to be excluded from the Class in Castro, et al. v. Sanofi Pasteur Inc., No. 11-7178 (D.N.J.) and include your name, address, telephone number and signature.

Warning! If your letter is sent after the deadline it will be considered invalid and you won’t be excluded from the Class. You cannot exclude yourself by telephone or email.

If you ask to be excluded, you will not get a payment. You will not be legally bound by the Settlement or anything that happens in this lawsuit. If you exclude yourself from the Class, however, you cannot object to the proposed Settlement or the application for attorneys’ fees, costs, expenses and/or service awards to the Class Representatives.

IF I DO NOT EXCLUDE MYSELF, CAN I SUE SANOFI FOR THE SAME THING LATER?

Answer:

No. The Court has granted final approval.  If you did not exclude yourself, you remain in the Class forego any right to sue Sanofi for any of the Released Claims as described in the Settlement Agreement available on the Court Documents page of this site.

HOW DO I TELL THE COURT THAT I DON'T LIKE THE SETTLEMENT?

Answer:

The deadline to object has passed.

If you are a Class Member (and have not excluded yourself), you may tell the Court that you object to (disagree with) all or any part of the proposed Settlement, and/or the application for attorneys’ fees, costs, and expenses, and/or service awards to the Class Representatives, and/or the plan for distributing the money. You must give reasons why you think the Court should not approve it. The Court will consider your objection(s) when it decides whether or not to finally approve the Settlement.  Your written objections must be postmarked no later than July 10, 2017.

To object, you must file your written objection(s) with the Court at this address:

United States District Court for the District of New Jersey
Clerk of Court
Martin Luther King, Jr. Building & U.S. Courthouse for the District of New Jersey
50 Walnut Street
Newark, NJ 07101

You must also send a copy of your written objection(s) to Class Counsel and Counsel for the Defendant at the following addresses:

DESIGNATED CLASS COUNSEL
Eric L. Cramer
Berger & Montague, P.C.
1622 Locust Street
Philadelphia, PA 19103

DESIGNATED DEFENDANT’S COUNSEL
Colin R. Kass
Proskauer Rose
1001 Pennsylvania Ave., N.W.
Washington, D.C. 20004

Your written objection(s) must include the case caption, Castro, et al. v. Sanofi Pasteur Inc., No. 11-7178 (D.N.J.), along with: (i) your name; (ii) your address; (iii) your telephone number; (iv) a notice of intention to appear; (v) proof of membership in the Class; and (vi) the specific grounds for the objection and any reasons why you want to appear and be heard, as well as all documents and writings that you want the Court to consider.

Do not call the Court or the Judge’s office about your objection(s). If you have any questions, call the Settlement Administrator at 1-866-216-0279.

IS OBJECTING THE SAME AS BEING EXCLUDED?

Answer:

No. Objecting means you tell the Court which part(s) of the Settlement you disagree with (including the plan of distributing the money, request for attorneys’ fees and expenses or services awards for Class Representatives).
Being excluded (also called opting-out) means you tell the Court you do not want to be part of the Class and do not want any money under the Settlement.

DO I HAVE A LAWYER IN THIS CASE?

Answer:

Yes. The Court has appointed the lawyers listed below to represent you and the Class as “Co-Lead Class Counsel” (also referred to as “Class Counsel”). These Court-appointed Co-Lead Class Counsel are experienced in handling similar cases. Other lawyers have also worked with Co-Lead Counsel to represent you in this case. Because you are a Class Member, you do not have to pay any of these lawyers. They will be paid from the Settlement Fund.

Eric L. Cramer
Berger & Montague, P.C.
1622 Locust Street
Philadelphia, PA 19103
ecramer@bm.net
(215) 875-3000

Linda P. Nussbaum
Nussbaum Law Group, P.C.
1211 Avenue of the Americas
New York, NY 10036
lnussbaum@nussbaumpc.com
(212) 438-9102

SHOULD I HIRE MY OWN LAWYER?

Answer:

You do not have to hire your own lawyer. But you can if you want to, at your own cost.
If you hire your own lawyer to appear in this case, you must tell the Court and send a copy of your notice to Class Counsel.

HOW WILL THE LAWYERS BE PAID?

Answer:

The Court was asked to approve a fee to Class Counsel of one-third (i.e. thirty-three and one third percent) of the Settlement Fund (including accrued interest) plus reimbursement of their expenses they have paid. The Court granted approval of the requested Attorney fees and costs on October 20, 2017. The Attorney fees and expenses will come out of the Settlement Fund.

Class Counsel also applied for service awards to the Class Representatives for their services to the Class of up to $100,000 each. The Court granted approval of the requested service awards on October 20, 2017. The service awards will come out of the Settlement Fund.

The Order approving the Attorney fees and costs, and service awards, is available on the Court Documents page of this website.

WHEN AND WHERE WILL THE COURT DECIDE WHETHER TO APPROVE THE SETTLEMENT?

Answer:

The Court held a Fairness Hearing at 10:00 am on October 3, 2017. The hearing took place at:

United States District Court for the District of New Jersey
United States Post Office and Courthouse Building
Newark, NJ 07101

The Court granted Final Approval of the Settlement on October 20, 2017.

WHY IS THERE A FAIRNESS HEARING?

Answer:

The hearing is about whether or not the Settlement is fair, reasonable, and adequate.  The Court will consider any objections and listen to Class Members who have asked to speak at the hearing.  The Court will also decide whether it should give its final approval of the Plaintiffs’ requests for attorneys’ fees and expenses, service awards, and other costs.  After the hearing, the Court will decide whether to give the Settlement final approval.

DO I HAVE TO COME TO THE HEARING TO GET MY MONEY?

Answer:

No. You do not have to go to the hearing, even if you sent the Court an objection(s). But you can go to the hearing or hire a lawyer to go to the hearing if you want to, at your own expense.  Class Counsel will answer the Court’s questions, if any.

MAY I SPEAK AT THE HEARING?

Answer:

You may ask the Court for permission to speak at the Final Fairness Hearing. You must file a Notice of Intention to Appear with the Court by July 10, 2017 at this address:

United States District Court for the District of New Jersey
Clerk of Court
Martin Luther King, Jr. Building & U.S. Courthouse for the District of New Jersey
50 Walnut Street
Newark, NJ 07101

You must also mail a copy of your notice to Class Counsel and Counsel for Defendant at the address listed below.

DESIGNATED CLASS COUNSEL
Eric L. Cramer
Berger & Montague, P.C.
1622 Locust Street
Philadelphia, PA 19103

DESIGNATED DEFENDANT’S COUNSEL
Colin R. Kass
Proskauer Rose
1001 Pennsylvania Ave., N.W.
Washington, D.C. 20004

Your Notice of Intention to Appear must include the case caption, Castro, et al. v. Sanofi Pasteur Inc., No. 11-7178 (D.N.J.), along with: (i) a notice of intention to appear; (ii) your name; (iii) your address; (iv) your telephone number; and (v) personal information for other people (including lawyers) who want to speak at the hearing.

WHAT HAPPENS IF I DO NOTHING AT ALL?

Answer:

If you do nothing at this point, you will be a Class Member and participate in the Settlement as described in the notice you received. However, you will need to complete, sign, and return the Claim Form (once it is sent to you) in order to obtain a payment.

If you did not exclude yourself, you remain in the Class, and that means you will be required to forego any right to sue, or be part of any other lawsuit against, Sanofi over the “Released Claims.”

WHERE CAN I GET MORE INFORMATION?

Answer:

There are several ways to get more information about the Settlement.  This website contains documents related to this case, including: the complete Settlement Agreement, the Notice, Publication Notice, the First Amended Complaint, the motion seeking the Court’s preliminary approval of the Settlement, the motion seeking the Court’s final approval of the Settlement, the motion seeking the Court’s approval of payment to Class Counsel of attorneys’ fees, costs, and expenses, and the proposed Plan of Distribution.

You may also ask for copies of those documents by calling the Settlement Administrator toll-free at 1-866-216-0279, or writing to Menactra Antitrust Litigation Settlement, c/o Rust Consulting, Inc. – 5203, P.O. Box 2563, Faribault, MN 55021-9563.

PLEASE DO NOT WRITE OR CALL THE COURT OR THE CLERK’S OFFICE FOR INFORMATION

View the Privacy Policy