Q: When will I get paid?
A: This depends on the individual circumstances of your case. The process of going through thousands of settlements and figuring out whether or not people qualify, and how much they will receive, is an incredibly complex process. There is a Stryker settlement administrator being put into place to administer all the settlements. This company is called Garden City. Garden City will hire hundreds of individuals such as retired nurses, or people skilled at reviewing medical records, to help process this mass wave of settlement claims that are going to be made over the next couple of months.
The process of getting the infrastructure in place is time consuming. Right now, the Stryker settlement is structured in two parts: a base award and enhancements. The base award is simpler to figure out. If you had a revision surgery that qualifies, you receive the base award. There might be some small deductions but it’s a pretty straightforward process. We expect base awards will be entirely processed and payments will start to be made probably in the late summer of 2015. The enhancements are more difficult to evaluate and process. There are many medical records that need to be reviewed and specific things that have to be shown in the medical records to qualify for an enhancement. If an enhancement is denied or objected to by Stryker, there’s an appeal process. We expect the enhancement process of the settlement will be paid around early 2016.
We understand for many people waiting 9 months to a year for their Stryker settlement seems like a long time. But not having a settlement means waiting even longer. There are more than 5,500 cases on file right now. The idea of not taking the settlement for fear of waiting too long to get paid needs to be compared to the alternative. The alternative is getting in line behind 5,500 people to get your day in court. Many people will be upset about how long it takes to get paid. Unfortunately, that is the reality.