The products produced by drug manufacturers are supposed to help, not hurt, consumers. Unfortunately, every year there are new drugs that make it to market that cause unintended side effects that can be fatal. If your loved one was made ill, disabled, or killed by a medication, you might have the right to file a liability claim against the drug’s manufacturer.
When the Drug Manufacturer Can Be Held Liable
Whether a drug is an over-the-counter medication or a prescription does not matter in a product liability claim. When a drug is made available to consumers, it could be considered as dangerous in a product liability claim. For instance, Johnson & Johnson has been taken to court recently over claims that its talcum powder causes ovarian cancer.
While females using the product in their genital area is not listed as a use on the product packaging per se, it isn’t illogical that consumers would use it as such and the company may be facing fines.
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One of the first questions to ask in a dangerous drug claim is how the patient obtained the drug.
If the patient is filing a complaint because of an over-the-counter medication, it’s typically the drug manufacturer that is liable for the damages. No intermediate party that could have stopped the patient from taking the medication if there were a known risk of harm.
When You Can and Cannot File a Claim Against the Drug Manufacturer
When the medication caused a side effect solely because of the contents of the medication and not the error of a pharmacist or physician, the manufacturer can be held liable. However, there are some prescription drugs that produce known side effects and are still sold and used.
Drugs that help but can also hurt are “unavoidably unsafe” products which are drugs that are still beneficial to the patient regardless of the side effects. If you come to harm from one of these types of drugs that have clear warnings of the side effect risks, you may not have the ability to file a product liability claim.
Some examples of when a drug manufacturer may NOT be liable for damages suffered from a medication include the following.
- The patient did not follow instructions for proper use and storage of the medication.
- The patient’s doctor failed to check for drug interactions or patient allergies.
- A nurse or pharmacist gave out an improper dose of the medication was administered.
- A mistake was made in mixing prescriptions at the pharmacy.
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Don’t File a Claim Against a Drug Manufacturer Alone
Product liability claims are complex legal cases that put you, the consumer, up against large corporations with extensive legal teams. These are not the types of legal situations to handle without an attorney on your side. Attorney David Bressman of Bressman Law could help your family determine if you have a product liability case against a drug manufacturer if your loved one suffered severe or fatal injury due to a dangerous medication.
Contact the office today to schedule a FREE consultation regarding your rights to recovery if a medication caused a damaging or deadly side effect in your loved one. Call today: (614) 538-1116.
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