When you become seriously ill or injured and are prescribed medication to treat your condition, you should be able to trust that when you take the drugs as directed, you will not face further injury or illness.
If a dangerous drug has caused you significant damages and you are unsure where to turn for help, a dangerous drug attorney at Brown & Barron can help. We understand you may have questions regarding the claims process and what to expect next. Here, we have answered some of the most frequently asked questions surrounding dangerous drug lawsuits. You can also contact our office to discuss your unique case.
When Can You File a Dangerous Drug Claim?
You may be able to file a lawsuit against a dangerous drug maker if you suffered serious injury or illness after taking a dangerous drug as intended. It may not always be clear whether the dangerous drug in question is responsible for causing the injury or illness you sustained. It can take a detailed investigation of your medical history and expert witness testimony to prove a claim that a dangerous drug caused you harm.
For this reason, it can be beneficial to hire an attorney for help with pursuing your legal options in a dangerous drug case. From there, your attorney can explore your legal options with you further.
Who Is Liable for Injuries Caused by Dangerous Drugs?
There are many parties who could be at fault for the dangerous drug injuries you endured. Generally, some of the parties who are frequently named in dangerous drug lawsuits include:
- Pharmaceutical companies
- Drug manufacturers and distributors
These are just a few of the parties who could be found liable for your injury or illness. An in-depth investigation into your case will reveal which individual or entity should be compelled to compensate you for your suffering.
How Long Will You Have to Get Your Dangerous Drug Lawsuit Filed?
If you are hoping to pursue a dangerous drug lawsuit, you will need to take action on your case quickly. The statute of limitations for cases of this nature can often be complex. Under Maryland law, the statute of limitations for personal injury claims is three years, per Md. Code, Cts. & Jud. Proc. § 5-101.
However, if you are pursuing a medical malpractice lawsuit, the statute of limitations could be as long as five years. It can be difficult to determine whether your case should be classified as a medical malpractice lawsuit or a personal injury case. An attorney from our team will carefully analyze the details of your case to determine how much longer you have to get your lawsuit filed.
Once the statute of limitations has expired, you will no longer have the opportunity to pursue your case in the civil court system. If you attempt to pursue your case once the statute of limitations runs out, the judge will have no other choice but to dismiss your case. Fortunately, when you have a dangerous drug attorney handling the legal details of your case, you can focus on recovering from your injuries while we handle your lawsuit.
What Damages Can You Recover in a Dangerous Drug Claim?
When someone else’s negligence or misconduct is the cause of your injury or illness, you have the right to seek compensation for every way your life has been affected by your injuries. Dangerous drug claims are no different. You have the right to be compensated for your economic and non-economic damages.
Economic damages have a fixed financial worth. You can easily quantify economic damages by reviewing pay stubs, medical records, receipts, financial statements, bank documents, and other important legal documents. Some of the more commonly awarded types of economic damages in dangerous drug claims include:
- Hospital bills
- Costs of prescription medications
- Medical equipment fees
- Costs of physical therapy or rehabilitation
- Costs of mental health counseling
- Diagnostic imaging fees
- Cost of ongoing medical care and treatment
- Unexpected child care expenses
- Costs of household maintenance and upkeep
- Loss of income
- Diminished earning capacity including loss of future potential earnings, bonuses, contributions to your 401(k), and loss of other benefits
- Property damages, where applicable
However, you also have the right to be compensated for non-economic damages. Non-economic damages do not have a financial value. To obtain compensation for these losses, your dangerous drug attorney will need to closely examine the ways your life as a whole has been affected by your injuries to ensure that every loss is taken into account. With that being said, some of the more commonly awarded types of non-economic damages include:
- Emotional distress
- Physical pain and suffering
- Diminished quality of life
- Disfigurement and skin scarring
- Loss of companionship, guidance, and support (for wrongful death cases)
Many victims of dangerous drugs also wonder whether they can be compensated through punitive damages. Punitive damages are only awarded when the Maryland court system decides that it is appropriate to punish the liable party beyond your compensatory damages.
Punitive damages are designed to punish the liable party for actions that may be considered egregious or grossly negligent. Although they are awarded rarely, if you are awarded punitive damages in your dangerous drug claim, the total amount of your injury settlement could be dramatically increased.
Can You Share Liability for Injuries or Illnesses Caused by Dangerous Drugs?
It is not common for victims of dangerous drugs to share liability for their injuries or illnesses unless they were found to have taken the medication in a way other than the manufacturer intended. However, the defense may argue that you share fault for your injuries or were fully responsible for them. The defense could attempt to argue that you share liability to avoid being compelled to compensate you for your damages.
For this reason, you may want to have an attorney on your side who will ensure that liability is accurately evaluated in your case. This will go a long way in helping to protect your injury settlement.
Will You Have to Go to Court?
You should always prepare for the possibility that your case will need to go to court. In some cases, you may be able to obtain an out-of-court injury settlement that meets your needs.
However, because the settlement process may not yield an offer that fully meets your needs for recovery, you may need to bring your case before a jury if you hope to recover maximum compensation for your damages.
Although going through a difficult litigation process can seem intimidating, when you have an attorney on your side, you can rest easier, knowing your team is advocating for your right to full compensation.
Can You File a Dangerous Drug Claim on Behalf of Your Child?
Yes. If your child suffers a serious injury or illness caused by a defective drug, it will be up to you as their legal guardian or parent to take action on their behalf. Children may not have the ability or authority to pursue action for themselves, but as their advocate, you can fight for the compensation they need and deserve to get through these difficult times and handle any lasting impact the dangerous drug may have on their lives.
How Will You Know if You Have Grounds for a Dangerous Drug Claim?
It may not always be clear whether you have grounds for a dangerous drug claim. Generally, if someone else’s negligence or misconduct is responsible for causing your injuries and your injuries have had a significant impact on your life, they should be ordered to compensate you.
However, it may not always be clear whether a dangerous drug is responsible for causing your injury or illness. For this reason, it may be in your best interest to reach out to an attorney’s team to find out whether a dangerous drug is responsible for your condition and what steps you can take to seek justice for your situation.
What Can a Dangerous Drug Lawyer Do to Handle a Case?
A dangerous drug lawyer can handle all the legal tasks involved in a lawsuit. They will advocate for the best possible results in your case.
When you hire an attorney from Brown & Barron, you can hand off these tasks to your lawyer:
- Investigating the case and gathering strong evidence
- Linking your harm or injury to a dangerous drug
- Building expert witness testimony to make your case
- Handling communications with all parties involved in the case
- Negotiating an out-of-court settlement for you
- Litigating for you at trial
- Advising you of your legal options throughout the case
In some situations, your lawsuit may be filed against a drug maker or other entity against whom there are many other existing lawsuits. In these cases, your lawyer can advise you on how you may be able to join an existing mass tort or explain how to proceed with your own individual lawsuit.
What Injuries or Illnesses Are Caused by Dangerous Drugs?
Dangerous drugs have been known to cause a wide variety of injuries and illnesses. Depending on the type of drug you consumed or were prescribed, the impact could affect virtually any part of your body. With that in mind, some of the more common types of injuries seen in dangerous drug claims include:
- Fractured bones or reduced bone density
- Internal bleeding
- Organ failure
- Impaired kidney function
- Impaired liver function
If you suffered another injury or illness and you believe dangerous drugs are the cause, you may have the right to financial compensation. You can contact our office to discuss the impact your injuries have had on your life.
What Are Some Types of Dangerous Drugs?
You could be facing harmful complications as a result of taking several medications. Some of the most commonly litigated dangerous drug cases include the following:
You could be able to bring a case against manufacturers of drugs beyond those listed here.
What Evidence Can Be Used to Support My Case?
If you are hoping to prove liability in a dangerous drug claim, the evidence will need to prove that the accused party is more likely than not responsible for your condition. With that in mind, some of the evidence that could be used to support your case include:
- Witness statements
- Expert testimony
- Photos of your injuries
- Medical records
- Family or coworkers’ testimony
Your dangerous drug attorney’s in-depth investigation into your claim will help uncover the evidence needed to prove liability based on a preponderance of the evidence.
What Is Informed Consent?
When you see a healthcare provider for medical treatment or care, your healthcare provider is supposed to inform you of the risks and side effects associated with any treatment plan. This includes the prescription of dangerous drugs.
If you gave your consent to the treatment after being informed of the risks, side effects, and how to administer the drug correctly, this refers to informed consent. However, do not be surprised if the defense argues that your injury or illness was a side effect or risk associated with your treatment plan. Hiding behind informed consent is a common tactic in dangerous drug claims like yours.
How Can You Prove Negligence in a Dangerous Drug Claim?
In order to prove negligence in a dangerous drug claim, your attorney will need to show that the four elements of negligence have been met. These include:
- Duty of care
- Breach of duty
Here, our dangerous drug attorneys will need to prove that the defendant in your case owed you a duty of care, breached that duty of care, and caused you significant damages that have had a substantial impact on your life.
Contact a Dangerous Drug Attorney’s Team for Help Today
Although filing a civil lawsuit may be overwhelming, with help from a dangerous drug attorney at Brown & Barron by your side, you can rest easier knowing our team is fighting for maximum compensation.
Contact our office today to schedule your free, no-obligation consultation when you call us. We are ready to get started on your case today.