James M. Beck | ReedSmith
Jim joined Reed Smith’s Life Sciences Health Industries, Product Liability, and Appellate Groups in the spring of 2012. Jim handles complex personal injury and product liability litigation. On the appellate side, he has drafted major appellate briefs in significant product liability and related matters, including more than 100 amicus curiae briefs.
Jim belongs to the American Law Institute, the Product Liability Advisory Committee, Lawyers for Civil Justice, and several other national legal organizations. In Pennsylvania, he belongs to PDI and the Philadelphia Ass’n of Defense counsel. In 2015 he won PDI’s Distinguished Defense Counsel award. His monthly updates on new Pennsylvania legal decisions affecting personal injury litigation are distributed to both PDI and PADC members.
For PLAC, Jim wrote a largely successful amicus brief in the ground-breaking Tincher v Omega Flex decision where the Pennsylvania Supreme Court overturned 35 years of product liability precedent. Following Tincher, he organized the “Tincher Group” of defense counsel, which has produced scholarship and suggested post-Tincher jury instructions in order to prevent the defense win in in Tincher from being undercut.
Jim is the founder and co-host of the award-winning Drug & Medical Device Law blog. He is the lead author of the Drug and Medical Device Product Liability Deskbook, published by Law Journal Press in 2004, and updated biannually.
His two most recent law review articles are: “Rebooting Pennsylvania Product Liability Law: Tincher v. Omega Flex & the End of Azzarello Super-Strict Liability,” 26 Widener L.J. 91 (2017), and “3D Printing: What Could Happen to Products Liability When Users (and Everyone Else in Between) Become Manufacturers,” 18 Minn. J.L. Sci. & Tech. 143 (2017).