Millions of Americans rely on prescription medications to handle illnesses both chronic and persistent. Whether it’s a muscle relaxant while recuperating from an injury or medications for conditions like HIV, diabetes or multiple sclerosis, we count on these medications.
Of course, there are serious potential side effects to some of these drugs, and when a pharmaceutical company isn’t careful, the results can be deadly. Filing a lawsuit for wrongful death against a drug company, however, isn’t as easy as it might seem. Learn how lawsuits progress against drug companies, the complications that can arise, and why a wrongful death attorney is an important part of your case.
Wrongful Death Lawsuits
Wrongful death suits against pharmaceutical companies are based on product liability law. Under this concept, manufacturers of products — including medications — have a responsibility to provide products that are reasonably safe to use and free from the risk of injury or death.
If they knowingly provide dangerous products without proper warnings, and people get hurt as a result, they can be sued for damages. This is why prescription medications tend to have long lists of potential side effects.
Loophole for Generic Drugs
However, there’s a loophole that was created by the Supreme Court related to generic drugs. In the 2011 case Pliva v. Mensing, the court held that generic drug manufacturers aren’t liable for injuries caused by the medications they create. The reasons are complex, but they come down to the fact that federal law trumps state law, and state laws are often stricter than FDA regulations, making it impossible to comply with both in some cases.
Should You Sue?
If you lose a loved one due to a drug that was unreasonably dangerous or didn’t carry a warning, you should absolutely look into filing a wrongful death suit. In such a lawsuit you could be eligible to collect compensation for medical bills leading up to your deceased spouse, child or parent’s death, for their funeral expenses, for emotional damages, loss of companionship and more.
Even if the drug in question was a generic drug, you should still consider filing suit. This is because the Court is hearing other cases which may repair the loophole caused by Pliva v. Mensing, but even if they do, there will still be a statute of limitations during which you need to file, in order to have your suit heard. This means you’ll need to file now, to get your claim in — waiting could cost you.
Why You Need a Wrongful Death Attorney
Fighting a powerful pharmaceutical company is not something to be taken lightly, nor to be taken without the right help and legal knowledge. A wrongful death attorney will know exactly how to pursue your case, and how to protect your rights against insurance companies and corporations who will go to great lengths to protect themselves and avoid paying out substantial settlements.
If you’re in the Nashville, TN, area and need help with a wrongful death suit related to pharmaceuticals, Mitch Grissim & Associates can help. Give us a call to discuss your case today.