Kila B. Baldwin, a partner at Kline & Specter, has been involved in a number of the firm's high-profile cases, including as lead counsel in trials that resulted in verdicts of $80 million, $57.1 million and $41 million against Johnson & Johnson in transvaginal mesh cases.
Baldwin was selected a Pennsylvania Super Lawyer for 2019 and 2020. From 2011-2018 she was named a Pennsylvania Super Lawyer — Rising Star and for 2014-2019 as a New Jersey Super Lawyer -- Rising Star, designating her as among the top 2.5 percent of attorneys in the two states who are 40 or younger. She also was selected for the 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020 and 2021 editions of the peer-review publication Best Lawyers in America.
In her latest major case, Baldwin in February 2020 achieved a $12.75 million settlement with a medical device manufacturer, Monteris Medical Inc., whose NeuroBlate Sidefire broke during surgery and caused brain damage to the patient. (Read article) Prior to that case, Baldwin obtained a $75 million settlement in a wrongful death case, the largest pre-trial settlement in a case in Pennsylvania history.
In May 2019, Baldwin was co-counsel in a six-week trial that resulted in an $80 million jury verdict against Johnson & Johnson subsidiary Ethicon Inc. for a Media, Pa., woman injured by a surgically implanted vaginal mesh device. The verdict in Philadelphia Common Pleas Court included $50 million in punitive and $30 million in compensatory damages, making it the country's largest compensatory award to date in a vaginal mesh case. (Read article)
A few months earlier, Baldwin won a $41 million verdict -- including $25 million in punitive damages – against a J&J for a Lancaster, Pa., woman who suffered permanent injuries from a vaginal mesh device designed and marketed by a company subsidiary. (Read article)
In late 2017, Baldwin won a major jury verdict against J&J for a Pennsylvania woman injured by a vaginal mesh device made by the company's Ethicon Inc. subsidiary. The award included $7.1 million in compensatory and $50 million in punitive damages for the behemoth drug and device maker's reckless behavior in selling the defective product implanted in women across the country. (Read article) The verdict was featured on the BBC program Panorama. In earlier cases, Baldwin was co-counsel in two trials that resulted in verdicts of $12.5 million and $13.5 million for two other women injured by the surgically implanted vaginal mesh products. (See the Hammons and Carlino cases.)
Earlier, Baldwin was co-counsel in litigation that produced a $15 million settlement in a birth injury medical malpractice case against a northern New Jersey hospital, a labor and delivery nurse and an obstetrician.
Before that, she was co-counsel with Shanin Specter in a case that produced the largest-ever personal injury verdict in Pennsylvania. In December 2012, a jury in Allegheny County, following a five-week trial, awarded $109 million to the family of a woman who was killed when a West Penn Power electric line fell on her in her own yard. The case later settled for $105 million. (See The Goretzka Case)
Baldwin also was co-counsel with Specter in the wrongful death case of Joseph Blumer, 43, a tow truck driver who was killed when the parking brake on his Ford F-350 tow truck spontaneously disengaged and he was crushed beneath the vehicle. An Allegheny County jury awarded his family $8.75 million. (See Blumer.) That case and Baldwin's critical role is chronicled in the book Bad Brake.
She previously helped litigate the Bridgeport fire case, which concluded in a preliminarily approved settlement of $35 million in April 2008. The settlement benefited more than 100 businesses and individuals which suffered losses in the fire that destroyed the Continental Business Center in Bridgeport, Pa. in 2001. (See Bridgeport)
Prior to joining Kline & Specter, she worked at the Philadelphia office of Reed Smith, an international law firm with more than 1,300 lawyers in 21 cities, where she handled pharmaceutical litigation on behalf of a major corporate client.
Before that, at the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, where Baldwin was assigned to the Division of Enforcement as part of a summer honors program while studying law, she worked with government agency enforcement attorneys investigating, among other things, the role of investment advisers in fraudulent schemes.
During law school she also worked with the Philadelphia district attorney’s office, where she handled preliminary felony hearings and misdemeanor trials in municipal court.
Baldwin earned a dual J.D./M.B.A. from the Temple University Beasley School of Law, where she was awarded the Beasley Scholarship and two awards for Outstanding Oral Advocacy. While at Temple she studied international law in Rome and was a member of the International Law Society and the Woman’s Law Caucus. Later, while a practicing attorney, she again attended Temple and graduated in 2010 from the LL.M. Program in Trial Advocacy, where she subsequently was appointed as an adjunct lecturer. Baldwin earned her bachelor’s degree in economics from Pennsylvania State University, where she graduated Phi Beta Kappa and was a member of the Schreyer Honors College.
Baldwin was recently elected vice-president of the Pennsylvania Association for Justice (PAJ), previously having served as parliamentarian, secretary and treasurer of the 18,000-member organization. She is a board member with the Philadelphia Trial Lawyers Association and is on the board of the Attorneys Information Exchange Group, a national litigation group for attorneys handling vehicle defect and transportation-related accident cases.
Baldwin recently authored a chapter in PAJ's "MedMal for Beginners," a 63-page booklet on handling medical malpractice litigation in the commonwealth. Her chapter dealt with "The Interplay Between the MedMal and Medical Product Case." (Read the booklet -- coming soon)
Baldwin is past president of the board of directors of The Women’s Therapy Center, a Philadelphia non-profit organization that helps provide mental health care to low-income patients. Baldwin, who speaks Italian and Spanish, previously worked as a volunteer in Philadelphia tutoring English as a second language through the Mayor’s Commission on Literacy.
She is licensed to practice law in Pennsylvania and New Jersey.
Kila Baldwin In The News:
Pelvic Mesh Plaintiff Secures $80M Verdict From Phila. Jury Against J&J Subsidiary, The Legal Intelligencer, 5/17/19
Kline & Specter Lawyers Win $80M Verdict In Vaginal Mesh Case, WPVI 6, 5/17/19
Philadelphia Jury Orders J&J To Pay $80 Million, Philly.Com, 5/18/19
J&J hit with $80M verdict in Philly mesh case, Law360, 5/17/19
Woman who needed 9 surgeries to fix pelvic mesh awarded $41M, LawWeekly, 2/1/19
Jury Awards $41M To Woman Who Needed 9 Surgeries To Fix Pelvic Mesh, The Legal Intelligencer 1/31/19
Pennsylvania woman wins $41 million verdict against Johnson & Johnson, The Philadelphia Inquirer 1/31/19
Article notes J&J's "irresponsible actions" over vaginal mesh implant. The Guardian, UK, 9/29/17
$57.1 Million Vaginal Mesh Verdict Awarded, victim Interviewed, CBS 3, 9/26/17
J&J Ordered to Pay $57 Million Over Injuries Tied to Pelvic Mesh, Bloomberg, 9/7/17
Jury delivers $57.1 million verdict vs. J&J in vaginal mesh case, The Legal Intelligencer, 9/7/17
Sixth Verdict Awards Mesh-Injured Plaintiff Record $57.1 Mill in Philadelphia, Mesh News Desk, 9/7/17
Manchester woman awarded $57.1 million in vaginal mesh lawsuit, 4-traders, 9/7/17
Kline & Specter Win $57.1 Million Verdict Vs. J&J In Vaginal Mesh Case, KYW Radio 9/8/17