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PFIZER RELEASES STATEMENT ON CALIFORNIA COURT OF APPEAL DECISION

 PFIZER RELEASES STATEMENT ON CALIFORNIA COURT OF APPEAL DECISION
 NEW YORK, March 10 /PRNewswire/ -- In a unanimous decision issued March 3, the California Court of Appeal in the Fourth District in Orange County directed the California Superior Court to reconsider its earlier ruling on whether cases involving non-California residents with properly functioning Shiley heart valves should be litigated in California, it was announced today by Pfizer Inc. (NYSE: PFE).
 The appellate court directed the lower court to reconsider its ruling refusing to stay cases brought by non-California residents with properly functioning Shiley convexo/concave heart valves while the cases are litigated in plaintiffs' home states -- even if those states have precedent holding that such cases are legally invalid. Approximately 300 such cases are pending in California.
 In rejecting arguments advanced by plaintiffs in two separate cases -- Alsup et al vs. Shiley and Moore et al vs. Shiley -- the appellate court held that "a showing that recovery would be more difficult or even impossible (in plaintiffs' home forum) does not demonstrate that the alternative forum is inadequate."
 The Court of Appeal ruled that "(t)he law does not require that California courts become the depository for non-resident plaintiffs' cases involving causes of action which are not recognized or would not be successful in those plaintiffs' home states." In reaching this result, the court expressed concern that allowing such cases to proceed in California "would undermine important public interests, particularly the interest in avoiding congesting California courts and overburdening California taxpayers."
 Yesterday's ruling followed a recent decision by the California Supreme Court, which held that valve fracture cases brought by foreign plaintiffs should be stayed in California so they could be tried in plaintiffs' home countries.
 -0- 3/10/92
 /CONTACT: A.A. Biesada, 212-573-2055, or Rick Honey, 212-573-2051, both of Pfizer/
 (PFE) CO: Pfizer Inc. ST: New York, California IN: MTC SU:


CK -- NY055 -- 6948 03/10/92 14:00 EST
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Mar 10, 1992
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