Sybil Niden Goldrich
Ernest Hornsby, Esq.
Dianna Pendleton-Dominguez, Esq.

CLAIMANTS' ADVISORY COMMITTEE E-NEWSLETTER
Volume 2, No. 6, June 10, 2005




This is the 14th e-newsletter (Vol. 2, No. 6) from the Claimants' Advisory Committee (CAC) in the Dow Corning bankruptcy Settlement Plan. You were sent a copy of the newsletter because our records show that you requested to be on the mailing list. If you wish to unsubscribe or to reply to this newsletter, send an email to: info@tortcomm.org. Please do not hit "Reply" to this email address. Please use the email address: info@tortcomm.org.



1. CORRECTION: The new website for the MDL 926 Claims Office (Revised Settlement Program) was incorrectly listed in our last newsletter. The correct website is:

www.claimsoffice-926.com

On June 3, 2005, the MDL 926 Court held an informal status conference in New Orleans. The MDL 926 Claims Administrator, Jean Eliason, reported that the Court recently entered an Order approving various Q&A's on General Connective Tissue Symptoms (GCTS). In the Dow Corning Settlement Option, GCTS claims are in Disease Option 2.

You can view or download a copy of the Q&A's directly from the MDL 926 Claims Office website. It is listed under "General Information" as Order 27N, dated April 20, 2005. A link to the document is located here: http://www.claimsoffice-926.com/pdf/0421104130.pdf We are reviewing the MDL 926 Q&A's now and are working with the Claims Administrator in the Settlement Facility to determine whether these Q&A's will be adopted by and incorporated into the Dow Corning Settlement Program. We will update you on this when the decision is made.

We are also reprinting in the text of this newsletter a Message from the MDL 926 Claims Administrator dated December 2, 2004 that primarily applies to Long Term Benefit Disease Claims (Disease Option 2 claims in the Settlement Facility). If you are relying solely on your RSP award, the only thing you need to do is send in your claim form and your RSP award letter.



Message from the [MDL 926] Claims Administrator

December 02, 2004

Dear Claimants and Counsel:

As you know, claims are reviewed in the order in which they are received. This includes the initial reviews and any subsequent reviews to resolve deficiencies in the original submission. Because most initial claim submissions are deficient, the majority of the claims being reviewed by the Claims Office at this time are re-reviews.

For your information, the most common deficiency noted in claims for benefits is missing medical records. Submitting all your medical records with your initial claim or any request for a re-review can help prevent or cure this deficiency. To receive the most efficient review of your claim, your submission should include all underlying office charts, radiology/pathology reports and laboratory test results from any health care professional that provided you with medical care. Examples of health care professionals whose records that should be submitted, in addition to the records from any required board-certified physician, include those from your treating physician, your pharmacy, your dentist (for dry mouth or oral ulcers), your optometrist or ophthalmologist (for dry eyes), a chiropractor, nurse practitioner, physician assistant, physical therapist and any other specialist that may have examined you.

Jean M. Eliason
Claims Administrator for the Revised Settlement Program



2. ATLA Breast Implant Litigation Group (BILG) to meet at the annual convention in Toronto
The Breast Implant Litigation Group (BILG) of ATLA (American Trial Lawyers Association) is scheduled to meet at the annual ATLA convention in Toronto. The date of the meeting is July 26, 2005. We do not have details about the location of the meeting at this time, but we will provide this in future newsletters and on the CAC website. The meeting is open to members of ATLA. For more information on joining BILG, contact Karen Read at: k_e_read@msn.com.

3. Three Additional Motions Filed On Behalf Of Individual Settling Claimants
Three additional motions to toll cure deadlines for rupture and disease were filed on behalf of certain clients represented by Doffermyre Shields Canfield Knowles & Devine. Copies of the motions are on the CAC's website under "Pending Motions." You will need to file a motion with the Court to request an extension or tolling of your cure deadline.

4. Doctors Deemed "Unreliable" By Either the MDL Claims Office or SFDCT
At the recent MDL status conference, the MDL 926 Claims Administrator reported that they have established a process for doctors (either directly or through an attorney or the claimant's attorney) to make inquiry about why they may be on a "watch list" and how they can have their name removed from this list. As a result of this ongoing effort, the MDL 926 Claims Administrator reported that only 4 doctors remain on the watch list. We do not know who these four doctors are but we understand that the four doctors relate only to Long Term Disease Claims (Disease Option 2 claims in the Dow Corning Settlement) and that there are additional doctors' names on the list for Fixed Benefit (Disease Option 1 in the Dow Corning Settlement).

We are working with the Claims Administrator for the Settlement Facility to determine what the SFDCT will do with regard to so-called "unreliable" doctors. Since the SFDCT list was adopted from the MDL 926 list, we are hopeful that the SFDCT will follow suit and remove the same doctors from their list. In the meantime, we are informed that claims affected by the "unreliable" doctor issue are placed on "administrative hold" - and that the cure deadline is not triggered or running for that claim. If a doctor's name is removed from the "watch list", then the claim will be reviewed. We are working with the Settlement Facility to make sure that claimants are informed when their doctor's name is removed from the list.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: If you would like to determine if your treating doctor or QMD (Qualified Medical Doctor) is on the "watch list," call Claims Assistance toll free at 1-866-874-6099 and provide the doctor's name. We are informed, however, that it will be TWO WEEKS before you can call to obtain this information.

If you received a letter from either the MDL 926 Claims Office or the Settlement Facility stating that the doctor who performed your evaluation has been deemed "unreliable", please contact us at: info@tortcomm.org with the name of the doctor.

5. Settlement Facility Processing Times
The Claims Administrator for the Settlement Facility has provided the following information with regard to processing times for Class 5 and 6.1 (Dow Corning Breast Implant Claims) as of June 7, 2005:

Estimated wait time for Rupture Review
If benefit form was submitted by: 0-2 months 2-4 months 4-6 months
Prior to August 2004 X    
08/04 - 09/04   X  
10/04 - 05/05     X


Estimated wait time for Explant Review
If benefit form was submitted by: 0-2 months 2-4 months 4-6 months 6-8 months
Prior to July 2004 X      
07/04 - 08/04   X    
09/04 - 01/05     X  
02/05 - 05/05       X


Estimated wait time for Disease Option 1 Review
If benefit form was submitted by: 0-2 months 2-4 months 4-6 months 6-8 months 8-10 months
Prior to June 2004 X        
07/04   X      
08/04 - 09/04     X    
10/04 - 11/04       X  
12/04 - 05/05         X


Estimated wait time for Disease Option 2 Review
If benefit form was submitted by: 0-2 months 2-4 months 4-6 months 6-8 months 8-10 months
Prior to July 2004 X        
07/04 - 08/04   X      
09/04 - 12/04     X    
01/05 - 05/05       X  


NOTE: There may be some instances where claims are not being reviewed within this time frame such as claims being placed on hold (e.g., claims with doctors on the watch list, unmatched NOI claims, etc.).

6. Reminder: Informational Meetings For September and October 2005
Please send us any requests for informational meetings in your area during the months of September and October 2005. These meetings will focus on updates and developments in the Settlement Option, dealing with deficiencies and cure deadlines, tips on submitting claims and avoiding pitfalls, and on Class 7 (silicone gel claimants) and Class 9 (Dow Corning Other Products) issues. Please send the requests to: info@tortcomm.org.

7. Status of Notice of Intent Survey Results and Resolution of Issue
We are working with the Settlement Facility to review the results of the two surveys sent to Notice of Intent claimants and hope to report more on the status of this issue soon.

8. Updated Claims Payment Information
The Settlement Facility began paying claims in June 2004 following the Effective Date. The claims examination process begins with a review for proof of manufacturer. Proof of manufacturer reviews through May 31, 2005 for Class 5, 6.1 and 6.2 (Dow Corning Breast Implant Claims) only show the following:
  • 58,245 proof of manufacturer claims submitted
  • 54,675 of these claim reviews have been completed
  • 45,425 or 83% have been determined to have acceptable proof of an eligible Dow Corning breast implant
Once a claimant has established acceptable proof of an eligible implant, claims for Explant, Rupture, and Expedited Release or Disease are reviewed. The most current results for claims paid for Dow Corning breast implant claimants through May 31, 2005 are provided below.

Claim Category Number of Claims Paid through May 31, 2005 Total $$ Paid in Category through May 31, 2005
Expedited Release 7,584 $14,760,607.80
Explant 9,713 $47,815,474.24
Explant Assistance 64 $240,000.00
Rupture 6,193 $123,070,883.07
Disease 3,864 $59,234,065.90
Total 27,418 $245,121,031.01


9. Deadlines
Please mark your calendar with the claim submission deadlines. Please note that most of these deadlines mean that your claim forms and materials must be received by the appropriate entity by the posted deadline. Please mail all forms early enough so that they are received by the deadline listed below.

Deadline Date Type of Deadline
June 1, 2006 Rupture Claim submission deadline for Classes 5, 6.1 and 6.2
June 1, 2006 Silicone Material Claim submission deadline - Class 7. All claims for Disease or Expedited Release must be submitted by this date. The Fund will close permanently and no new claims will be allowed after this date.
June 1, 2006 Covered Other Products submission deadline - Classes 9, 10.1 and 10.2. All claims for Expedited Release or a Medical Condition must be submitted by this date. The Fund will close permanently and no new claims will be allowed after this date.
June 1, 2007 Expedited Release submission deadline - Classes 5, 6.1 and 6.2
June 1, 2014 Explant Claims submission deadline for Classes 5, 6.1 and 6.2
June 1, 2019 Disease Claim submission deadline for Classes 5, 6.1 and 6.2


Deficiency / Cure Deadlines
If you receive a Notification of Status letter from the Settlement Facility stating that you have a deficiency in your claim submission, please note that there are very short deadlines to cure most deficiencies. The deadlines are listed below:

Settlement Benefit Deadline to Cure Deficiency
Proof of Manufacturer No deadline but your claim for Explant, Rupture, Medical Condition or Disease will not be reviewed until you first have acceptable proof of an eligible implant
Explant 6 months from date of Notification of Status letter
Rupture 6 months from date of Notification of Status letter
Medical Condition
(Classes 9, 10.1 and 10.2)
6 months from date of Notification of Status letter
Disease 1 year from date of Notification of Status letter




If you would like to read prior CAC e-newsletters, they are available on the CAC website by clicking on "Electronic Newsletter." We urge you to visit the CAC website (www.tortcomm.org) on a regular basis to download or view relevant documents and read updates and new information. To contact the CAC, send an email to: info@tortcomm.org or send a letter to the new Post Office Box address for the CAC at:

Claimants' Advisory Committee
P.O. Box 665
St. Marys, Ohio 45885

This is a NEW P.O. Box address for the CAC so please update your records.

Questions about the status of your claim or a claim-specific question (i.e., when am I going to be paid, has my claim been processed, etc.) should be directed to the Claims Assistance Program at info@sfdct.com. Please do not send these types of questions to the CAC because we are unable to answer them. The CAC does not have access to individual claimant files and information. When we receive inquiries such as this, we have to forward them to the Claims Assistance Program for a response which delays the response.

NOTICE: This document is copyrighted. You are not authorized to post it on any website without express, prior written permission of the Claimants' Advisory Committee.



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