James M. Beck Photo

James joined Reed Smith's Life Sciences Health Industry, Product Liability, and Appellate Groups in the spring of 2012.

James handles complex personal injury and product liability litigation. He has overseen the development of legal defenses, master briefs, and dispositive motions in numerous multidistrict litigation matters and other mass torts. On the appellate side, he has drafted major appellate briefs in significant product liability and related matters, including numerous amicus curiae briefs.


  • University of Pennsylvania Law School, 1982, J.D.
  • Princeton University, 1978, B.A., cum laude

  • Pennsylvanie

  • U.S. District Court - Eastern District of Pennsylvania
  • U.S. Supreme Court
  • U.S. Court of Appeals - Third Circuit

  • Amicus Committee Member – Pennsylvania Defense Institute, 2021-present
  • Amicus Committee Chairman – Philadelphia Association of Defense Counsel, 2021-present
  • Mass Torts Litigation Committee Newsletter Editor – American Bar Association, 2000-present
  • Case Selection Committee Member – Product Liability Advisory Council, 1998-present
  • Amicus Committee Co-Chair - Philadelphia Association of Defense Counsel, 2021-2022 
  • Member – American Law Institute, 2005
  • ABA Outstanding Subcommittee Chair, 2002-04, 2003-04, 2004-05, 2009-10

Récompenses et distinctions

  • Selected as a Lawyers for Civil Justice "Outstanding Contributor", 2022
  • Selected as a Top Author in the Product Liability and Life Sciences categories for the JD Supra Readers Choice Awards, 2018
  • Selected as a Top Author in the Product Liability and Medical Device Industry categories for the JD Supra Readers Choice Awards, 2017 
  • Best Newsletter Award (American Bar Association, Section of Litigation), 2015
  • Pennsylvania Defense Institute's Distinguished Defense Counsel Award, 2015
  • Listed in The International Who's Who of Life Sciences – Product Liability Lawyers
  • John T. Raleigh Lifetime Achievement Award (Product Liability Advisory Council), 2011

Notable Quotes

  • 8 March 2024 "Inside The Climactic Clash Over Skyrocketing MDL Caseloads" Law360
  • 9 February 2024 "Appeals and Alternative Grounds: Issues to Evaluate" Law.com
  • 1 January 2024 "Product Liability Cases To Watch In 2024" Law360
  • 26 December 2023 "Industry Standards Evidence Inadmissible Following 'Tincher,' Pa. Supreme Court Says" Law.com
  • 22 December 2023"Pa. Justices Nix 'Industry Standards' As Defense" Law360
  • 2 November 2023 "Yes, Courts Can Count—And So Should Appellate Counsel" Law.com
  • 22 September 2023 "20.8-to-1 Punitive to Compensatory Damages Ratio Could Spell Trouble for $26.2M Verdict" The Legal Intelligencer
  • 5 July 2023 "Product Liability Cases To Watch: 2023 Midyear Report" Law360
  • 29 June 2023 "US High Court's 'Mallory' Ruling Could Mean Busier Courts in Pa., but the Fight's Not Over" Law.com
  • 28 June 2023 "Pennsylvania is the only state with this law. A Supreme Court ruling just upheld it." The Philadelphia Inquirer
  • 18 May 2023 "Can the Collateral Order Doctrine Support a Nonprivilege-Related Appeal?" Law.com
  • 30 March 2023 "Multidistrict Litigation Rules Proposal Gets Chilly Reception" Bloomberg Law
  • 16 February 2023 "Don’t Let Vestigial Claims or Parties Wreck Your Appeal" The Legal Intelligencer
  • 2 January 2023 "Product Liability Cases To Watch In 2023" Law360
  • 24 January 2022 “It Just Got a Lot Harder to Execute 'Snap' Removals in Pennsylvania” The Legal Intelligencer
  • 4 December 2020 "Expanded Pa. Appeals Panel to Eye Decision Striking Down Federal Curb on Gunmaker Liability" The Legal Intelligencer
  • 3 August 2020 "Top Product Liability Cases Of 2020: Midyear Review" Law360
  • 1 March 2017 "Missouri Could Be Less Open to Out-of-State Plaintiffs" Bloomberg BNA
  • 30 January 2017 "Bristol-Meyers Case Could Have Wide Effect, Attorneys Say" Bloomberg BNA
  • 27 January 2017 "Ex-Accutane User's Time Limit Win May Draw Drug Suits To NJ" Law360
  • 25 January 2017 "James Beck Joins 3D Printing Protection Team" The American Law Institute
  • 25 January 2017 "Law firm Reed Smith establishes team to protect 3D printer users from lawsuits" 3Ders.org
  • 24 January 2017 " Reed Smith firm opens up new field: Protecting 3D printing from lawsuits" Philadelphia Inquirer
  • 20 January 2017 "Defense Bar Sees Jury Instructions Win in Latest Post-'Tincher' Ruling" The Legal Intelligencer
  • 28 September 2016 "3-D Printing Leaps Ahead of Product Liability Law" Bloomberg BNA
  • 2 September 2016 "Calif. Mass-Tort Ruling Not Seen Likely to Empty Pa. Dockets" The Legal Intelligencer
  • 1 September 2016 "Attorneys Agree Ban on Citing Nonprecedential Opinions Is a Hurdle" The Legal Intelligencer
  • 30 August 2016 "Plavix Ruling Cements Calif. As Center For Mass Torts" Law360
  • 15 August 2016 "Honda Says Plaintiffs Went Off Limits in Argument Over Crashworthiness Jury Charge" The Legal Intelligencer
  • 2 August 2016 "Appeals Court Overturn Philly Jury's $27M Award Over Knee Injury" Penn Record
  • 25 July 2016 "Out-of-State Pharma Filings Dip as Phila. Mass Torts Remain Steady" The Legal Intelligencer
  • 7 June 2016 "3-D Printing Set to Disrupt Products Liability Law" Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
  • 24 May 2016 "3-D Printing Set to Disrupt Products Liability Law" The Legal Intelligencer
  • 29 April 2016 "Lawyers Benefit Most From No-Injury Class Actions, Study Says" Law.com
  • 5 April 2016 "Industry To FDA: "Emerging Signals" May Do More Harm Than Good" Med Device Online
  • 9 February 2016 "Products Liability an 'Unnerving New World' Since 'Tincher'" Pennsylvania Law Weekly
  • 11 January 2016 "FDA Lawyers Question New Medical Device Safety Policy" Politico Prescription Pulse
  • 15 December 2015 "FDA in pain drug restriction U-turn" Financial Times
  • 23 November 2015 "Keeping the Jurisdictional Toothpaste in the Tube: "General Jurisdiction By Consent" After Daimler AG v. Bauman" Washington Legal Foundation
  • 17 November 2015 "Litigants May Test High Court After Turnover" The Legal Intelligencer
  • 16 November 2015 "Judge Notes 'Considerable Confusion' in Post-'Tincher' Ruling" The Legal Intelligencer
  • 13 November 2015 "Liability and Legal Issues May Derail the Future of 3D Printed Medication" 3DPrint.com
  • 10 November 2015 "Attorneys Note Legal Issues for 3D Printing of Drugs" Bloomberg BNA
  • 2 November 2015 "Blogging on the Run" American Lawyer
  • 16 October 2015 "Cross-Court Zoloft Rulings Highlight Different Standards" The Legal Intelligencer
  • 1 September 2015 "Possible FDA/Amarin Off-Label Deal; Rule Tweaks Ahead?" SCRIP Intelligence
  • 17 August 2015 "What to expect in wake of the Amarin ruling: more truthful off-label talk from pharma" Medical Marketing & Media
  • 14 August 2015 "Drug minnow Amarin downs FDA in constitutional battle" The Irish Times
  • 10 August 2015 "Amarin Case Could Unleash a Flood of Off-Label Promos" FiercePharmaMarketing
  • 10 August 2015 "FDA Loses Case Against Drug Marketing" Infinite Path
  • 9 August 2015 "Foreign Drug Manufacturer Allowed to Use Off-Label Marketing" Morning Ticker
  • 9 August 2015 "Irish Drug Manufacturer Amarin Pharma Inc Gets Green Light From US FDA For Drug Vascepa" Pioneer News
  • 8 August 2015 "Court Ruling Could Loosen Rules on Drug Marketing" Forex Report Daily
  • 8 August 2015 "Want To Promote Off-Label? Pick Your Battlefield" SCRIP Intelligence
  • 7 August 2015 "Amarin wins early victory against FDA in 'free speech' case over drug promotion" U.S. News & World Report
  • 7 August 2015 "5 Questions After Amarin's Off-Label Marketing Triumph" Law360
  • 13 July 2015 "Mass Tort Inventory Stays High in Wake of Program Changes" The Legal Intelligencer
  • 23 February 2015 "Claims Preempted in Branded Drug Suit; Maker Couldn't Unilaterally Change Label" Bloomberg BNA
  • 20 January 2015 "Citing Tincher, Lackawanna Judge Upholds $5.9M Verdict" The Legal Intelligencer
  • 26 September 2014 "Preemption Trend Favors Pharma in Generic Reglan Fight" Law360
  • 26 August 2014 "Restatement Rift Remains as Bar Awaits Tincher Ruling" The Legal Intelligencer
  • 18 August 2014 "Alabama Court Bucks Trend, Says Generic Patient Can Sue Pfizer" Litigation Daily
  • 9 July 2014 "The Biggest Product Liability Cases of 2014" Law360