Federal MDL proceedings are often but not always used in "mass tort " cases. The Wall Street Journal covers the topic today in the context of BP, and presents varying views. In general, plaintiffs tend to oppose MDL proceedings. The article is here.
Update on Toyota's Efforts to Use the MDL to Control the Situation as to Inside Counsel and Documents
Here is a Corporate Counsel that provides an update on and links to documents regarding Toyota's issues with its former inside counsel who claims that documents were wrongfully destroyed regarding alleged defects in cars.