Leigh D. Vernon

Member

Leigh D. Vernon was admitted to the Mississippi Bar in 1999. His experience spans from mass tort and repetitive exposure litigation, tribal court litigation, pharmaceutical and products liability litigation to tort and general litigation.  Leigh was actively involved in defending a corporate defendant in one of the first civil trials against a non-member defendant in the Choctaw Tribal Court for the Mississippi Band of Choctaw Indians. His practice in recent years has focused largely on the defense of pharmaceutical products liability cases.  Leigh has represented pharmaceutical manufacturers in Mississippi state and federal court, the Choctaw Tribal Court for the Mississippi Band of Choctaw Indians, and in other courts throughout the country. He has been actively involved in five different pharmaceutical litigations. Leigh currently serves as co-national coordinating counsel for Pfizer Inc. and Wyeth LLC in the non-consolidated Reglan/metoclopramide litigation pending throughout the country. 

Contact Information:

Telephone number: 601.965.1872
Email: lvernon@watkinseager.com
Practice Areas

Mass Tort and Repetitive Exposure
Pharmaceutical and Medical Device
Tort and General Litigation
Education

Bachelor's Degree: Spanish, Centre College, 1995
Juris Doctor: Mississippi College School of Law, cum laude, 1999

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Representative Cases and Matters

  • Truddle v. Wyeth, LLC, No. 2:11-cv-00207-GHD, 2015 WL 160696 (N.D. Miss. Jan. 12, 2015) (featured on Law 360 Product Liability daily newsletter on January 15, 2015) (pharmaceutical products liability)
  • Lashley v. Pfizer, Inc., 750 F.3d 470 (5th Cir. 2014) (Top 15 prescription drug/medical device products liability decisions of 2014 according to the Drug and Device Law blog) (pharmaceutical products liability)
  • Neeley v. Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc., No. 4:11-CV-325-JAR, 2013 WL 3929059 (E.D. Mo. July 29, 2013) (pharmaceutical products liability)
  • Chatman v. Pfizer, Inc., 960 F. Supp. 2d 641 (S.D. Miss. 2013), modified by 2014 WL 4546042 (Sept. 11, 2014) (pharmaceutical products liability)
  • Gardley-Starks v. Pfizer, Inc., 917 F. Supp. 2d 597 (N.D. Miss. 2013) (pharmaceutical products liability)
  • Lashley v. Pfizer, Inc., 877 F. Supp. 2d 466 (S.D. Miss. 2012) (first innovator liability theory case decided in Mississippi) (pharmaceutical products liability)
  • Gaddis v. Smith & Nephew, Inc., 534 F. Supp. 2d 697 (S.D. Miss. 2008) (orthopedic medical device products liability)
  • Warner-Lambert Co. v. Potts, 909 So. 2d 1092 (Miss. 2005) (pharmaceutical products liability)
  • In Re Phenylpropanolamine Prods. Liab. Litig., No. 1407, 2005 WL 6727709 (W.D. Wash. Aug. 16, 2005) (pharmaceutical products liability)
  • In Re Phenylpropanolamine Prods. Liab. Litig., No. 1407, C03-3226, Order Dismissing Case (W.D. Wash. Jan. 4, 2005), aff'd, 460 F.3d 1217 (9th Cir. 2006) (pharmaceutical products liability)
  • Currently serves as co-national coordinating counsel for Pfizer Inc. and Wyeth LLC in the non-consolidated Reglan/metoclopramide litigation pending throughout the country 
  • Represented pharmaceutical manufacturers in the following MDL proceedings:
  • In Re Rezulin Prods. Liab. Litig., MDL No. 1348 (S.D.N.Y.) (in addition to Mississippi state court and Choctaw Tribal Court proceedings)
  • In Re Phenylpropanolamine Prods. Liab. Litig., MDL No. 1407 (W.D. Wash.)
  • In Re Baycol Prods. Liab. Litig., MDL No. 1431 (D. Minn.)
  • In Re Reglan/Metoclopramide Litig., No. 01997 (state court consolidated proceedings in the Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas) (Pennsylvania)
  • In Re Reglan Litig., No. ATL-L-3865-10 (state court consolidated proceedings in the Superior Court of New Jersey)

Publications And Honors

  • Author, "Mississippi's Cap on Non-Economic Damages is Alive and Well", bamsouth.com, January 26, 2017
  • AV Preeminent® Peer Review Rated by Martindale-Hubbell
  • Jackson Young Lawyers Association Outstanding Service Award (2004)
  • Metro Business Chronicle's "Top 40 Under 45" Business and Community Leaders (2007)
  • Mid-South Super Lawyers - Rising Star (2012 - Class Action/Mass Torts)
  • Mississippi Volunteer Lawyers Project Pro Bono Volunteer Award (2010)

Professional And Community Involvement

  • Capital Area Bar Association
  • Legal Beagle 5K Run/Walk Benefiting the Mississippi Volunteer Lawyers Project, Coordinator and Co-Founder
  • Mississippi College School of Law/Rendigs National Products Liability Competition Championship Team, Coach (2011)
  • Mississippi College School of Law/Rendigs National Products Liability Competition Finalist Team, Coach (2010)
  • The Mississippi Bar
  • Pinelake Church; member and Deacon
  • St. Andrew's Episcopal School Tennis Team, Former Coach
  • St. Andrew's Episcopal School Class of 1991, 20-Year Reunion Co-Chair
 
 
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