A court in France issued a ruling against safety certifier TÜV on Friday, ordering the German company to pay an estimated 20,000 woman who received faulty breast implants that the group was in charge of approving for the now defunct Poly Implant Prothèse (PIP), the French company responsible for manufacturing and selling the implants.
The issue was first discovered in 2010, and in the years that followed, TÜV became the target after little could be done against the manufacturer. Several cases have gone to the courts, with some declaring that TÜV was misled by PIP, and it is that ruling history that the German firm is hoping to use in its appeal to this recent case.
TÜV’s responsibility was to inspect and approve the manufacturing process, but as the company argues, these inspections were never meant to check the quality of the implants themselves. PIP’s founder was handed a four-year prison sentence in 2013 over the incident.
Some women who received the implants in question had the breasts rupture, but health officials are telling women who have not yet had them removed that there are no health risks associated with the implants.
Until the appeal process can occur, TÜV will be required to pay a provisional amount of €3,000 to each of the 7,000 women represented in the case. After a further assessment is made, and if the appeal process results in no change, the final amount will increase.