Joe Cohen’s practice focuses on handling catastrophic injury and wrongful death cases arising from allegations of products liability (including pharmaceutical products), chemical and substance exposure, general negligence, and commercial litigation. Joe also provides individual representation to employees (current and former) of pharmaceutical and medical device manufacturers in civil and criminal contexts, including U.S. Department of Justice and State Attorneys General investigations.

He also litigates various types of disputes including fraud, deceptive trade practices, securities fraud, breach of contract, copyright and trademark infringement (including the Anti-Cybersquatting Consumer Protection Act (ACPA)), contract and lease disputes for property owners and fee-based management companies that lease residential and commercial properties, and non-compete litigation.  Joe has also handled suits related to medical malpractice, employment discrimination, and sexual harassment. 

Joe has tried cases to verdict as both first and second chair counsel and has engaged in an extensive motion practice that has included complex summary judgment issues and intricate challenges to experts in a variety of disciplines. He has handled matters in over 35 states and in multiple counties throughout the state of Texas.

Joe is active in both DRI – The Voice of the Defense Bar and the International Association of Defense Counsel (IADC), serving in various leadership capacities including on the DRI Board of Directors.

Honors & Recognitions

Who's Who Legal: Product Liability Defense, Leading Practitioner, 2018

Credentials

Education

J.D., University of Houston Law Center, cum laude, 1991

B.A., Northwestern University, 1988

Admissions

Texas

United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit

United States District Courts for the Northern, Southern, Eastern, and Western Districts of Texas

Experience

Pharmaceuticals / Products Liability

  • Represented major pharmaceutical manufacturers in lawsuits arising from the use of both prescription and over-the-counter medications alleged to have caused Stevens-Johnson Syndrome and Toxic Epidermal Necrolysis, and resulting catastrophic injuries and death.
  • Represented a pharmaceutical manufacturer in a suit alleging Stevens-Johnson Syndrome: obtained summary judgment.
  • Represented a major pharmaceutical manufacturer in multiple lawsuits arising from the use of two prescription drugs, including participation in the management and supervision of the entire case docket.
  • Represented a major pharmaceutical manufacturer involved in mass tort litigation: responsible for handling matters before a Rule 11 Pre-Trial Judge (for a region covering more than 30 of a state’s counties).
  • Represented fitting and valve manufacturers in products liability cases involving allegations of catastrophic injury.
  • Represented multiple product manufacturers, employers and premises owners in cases arising out of chemical exposure and asbestos, including being a trial team member in multiple asbestos jury trials.

Other Litigation 

  • Represented a peer-to-peer software developer against allegations of copyright infringement by the major record labels.
  • Represented a tire manufacturer in multiple wrongful death and personal injury suits filed throughout state relating to rollover accidents and product recall.
  • Represented Plaintiffs in a wrongful death suit arising out of 18-wheeler accident.
  • Represented numerous physicians, dentists and health care facilities in cases involving allegations of malpractice, including successful jury trial of dental malpractice case.
  • Represented landowners and property managers in premises liability and lease dispute lawsuits, including successful jury and bench trials.
  • Represented various trucking companies in wrongful death and catastrophic injury lawsuits and claims.
  • Represented a major oil company in numerous contractual disputes with distributors and retail outlets throughout the country.
  • Represented an employer in an Age Discrimination in Employment Act suit, including participation in a trial that resulted in a directed verdict on behalf of the employer.
  • Represented an employer in multiple sexual harassment suits, obtaining dismissal with prejudice of one suit after proving that plaintiff had forged documents that she argued supported her claim.
  • Represented an insurer and claims administrator for a voluntary benefits plan subject to ERISA, obtaining settlement for 1/10th of original demand, pending ruling on a motion for summary judgment.

Newsroom

Speaking Engagements

Affiliations

State Bar of Texas, Member

Houston Bar Association, Member

Texas Bar Foundation, Fellow

DRI – The Voice of the Defense Bar, Member

Board of Directors (National Director)
Product Liability Committee, Steering Committee, Member (2015 Seminar Chair, Former E-Discovery SLG Chair and Newsletter Editor)
Drug and Medical Device Committee, Steering and Seminar Planning Committee, Member
Data Management and Security Committee, Former Chair
Law in Transition Committee, Member
Technology Committee, Former Vice-Chair

International Association of Defense Counsel (IADC)

Membership Committee, Chair
Drug, Device, and Biotechnology Committee, Vice-Chair (Former Vice-Chair for Membership)
Diversity and Inclusion Committee, Co-Vice-Chair of Member Involvement
Internal CLE – Annual Meeting for the Drug, Device, and Biotechnology Committee, Vice-Chair
General Convention Committee
2017 Mid-Year Meeting, First-Timers Chair