Every day, millions of people in the U.S. rely on prescription drugs and medical devices to treat illness and injury, and to improve the quality of their lives. Unfortunately, not all of these products are safe. Companies sometimes place dangerous drugs and medical devices on the market without adequate testing, safeguards, or warnings. Some of these cases are well publicized, while many others never make the headlines, but cause just as much pain to the people whose lives are affected.
When companies take shortcuts and fail to put safety first, consumers suffer the consequences.
If you have been harmed by a dangerous drug or a defective medical device, we are prepared to stand up for you and your family. Our team of experienced lawyers will hold these companies accountable and make sure you receive full compensation for the harm done to you.
Mass tort cases stem from a dangerous drug or medical device on the market that harms a large number of people.
To learn more about these cases, see our articles discussing some of the most common mass tort FAQs we receive and the differences between mass tort, class action, and multidistrict litigation (MDL) lawsuits.
For dangerous drug and medical device lawsuits, talk with a local Maine law firm you can trust
Berman & Simmons has been representing plaintiffs in personal injury, medical malpractice, and other serious injury cases for more than 100 years.
We’re proud to be the trusted firm in Maine for people who have been seriously injured, and families that have suffered losses, through no fault of their own. We are recognized as the best personal injury and medical malpractice law firm in Maine and among the best in the U.S. We have obtained several of the largest jury verdicts in Maine history, and we have recovered $1 billion for our injured clients.
Dangerous medical devices: Defects and recalls are widespread in the U.S.
With advancements in medical technology, more people than ever need medical devices to help treat injury and disease and maintain their quality of life. Despite these breakthroughs, these products are sometimes dangerous to the patients they are supposed to help.
Dangerous drugs: A troubled history of recalls, warnings, and big profits
Medications are supposed to help you feel better. Unfortunately, drug companies may place a drug on the market without sufficient research and monitoring procedures. They may not properly warn patients and physicians about the dangerous risks and side effects of their drugs.
A Law Firm That Listens
At Berman & Simmons we treat you as a person, not a case number. We take pride in providing the highest level of legal representation, while maintaining the personal, one-on-one customer service you expect in Maine.
We understand the challenges you face. We realize that beyond the physical struggles, the emotional and financial impacts can be overwhelming.
Our lawyers and staff members take the time to listen to you, understand your concerns, and come up with solutions that can make your life better.
We'll Take Care of the Heavy Lifting
Drug and medical device manufacturers must meet legal obligations
When corporations fail to satisfy any of these or other requirements, they can be held legally responsible to the people they hurt. Dangerous drug and medical device lawsuits involve complex legal and medical issues, and they are expensive to pursue. At Berman & Simmons, our attorneys are extremely knowledgeable in both the legal and medical aspects of your case, and we have the resources to take on any opponent.
The companies that make prescription drugs and medical devices have a legal responsibility to ensure their products are safe and must:
Conduct adequate clinical trials and another testing as required by the FDA.
Clearly explain the risks and benefits of their products to healthcare providers and consumers.
Continue to test their products for safety.
Paralysis due to mismanagement of
Catastrophic injuries in a head-on car accident
Wrongful death case involving negligent
Plaintiff Rear Ended by
Delay in diagnosis and treatment of cancer
Significant Head Injury Car Accident
Dangerous Drugs and Medical Device FAQs
What is a mass tort lawsuit?
Mass tort cases stem from a defective drug or device on the market that harms a large number of people. Some of these cases are well-publicized, while many others never make headlines, but cause just as much pain to the people whose lives are affected.
Mass tort claims can include different complaints against the same defendant(s), and often involve injuries from dangerous drugs and medical products. For instance, patients can sue the maker of a defective medical implant for different types of injuries. In a mass tort case, they would file individual lawsuits, which are grouped together only for pretrial proceedings, and then they may be tried later in their original state jurisdiction.
Prescription drug and medical device makers are legally responsible for ensuring that their products are safe
- Conduct adequate clinical trials and other testing as the FDA requires
- Clearly explain the risks and benefits of their products to healthcare providers and consumers
- Continue to test their products for safety
When corporations fail to satisfy any of these or other requirements, they can be held liable to the people they harm. Dangerous drug and medical device lawsuits involve complex medical and legal issues and are expensive to pursue.
What types of mass tort claims are most common?
Mass tort categories typically fall into three types:
- Prescription drugs
- Product liability, which includes medical devices: Claims typically fall into three categories: 1) defective manufacture, 2) defective design, 3) failure to provide adequate warnings or instructions concerning the proper use of a product.
- Toxic contamination: Also known as “toxic torts,” these cases involve hazardous pollutants or chemicals that have poisoned people.
What are the skills needed to handle mass tort cases?
Mass tort cases require extraordinary resources and highly sophisticated knowledge. It takes an understanding and mastery of varied and complex subject matter and theories of liability and damages, the time necessary to review and process thousands of case documents, and the ability to work with many witnesses and experts. Our lawyers have the skills and tenacity to prepare a mass tort case no matter how complex.
What is the process for a mass tort claim?
These are the basic steps:
- Review records – We examine statements from claimants and their medical records to identify the device or drug and injuries.
- Injury consistency – We check for similarity of injuries among those harmed by drugs or devices as evidence for the claim and categorize the cases to understand any shared characteristics.
- Federal court filing – Individual cases are consolidated to speed up processing and information gathering.
- Bellwether trials – A small group of lawsuits, chosen from a larger group of similar cases, are tried first. The results can determine the potential outcomes of future cases. As an example, C.R. Bard, the maker of the inferior vena cava (IVC) filter G2, will pay plaintiff Sherr-Una Booker $3.6 million for injuries she suffered from the device and for failure to warn about its dangers in the first IVC “bellwether” case to go to trial.
- Settlement – This occurs when both parties enter negotiations to settle the claims, and any proposed agreements are presented to claimants to decide whether they will accept them or proceed to a trial.
How long does a mass tort claim take?
Because mass tort claims can involve multiple plaintiffs, they can take longer than typical personal injury cases. Generally, these cases take years before resolution.
There are statutes of limitations in medical device and dangerous drug cases, so it’s important to contact a lawyer as soon as possible if you believe you have a claim.
What type of damages can I claim in a mass tort case?
Under state and federal law, victims of dangerous drugs have the right to recover financial damages for various categories of loss, including:
- Current and future medical bills
- Lost work time related to your injury
- Disability and disfigurement
- Pain and suffering
- Mental and emotional damages
If you have been harmed by a dangerous drug or a defective medical device, we are prepared to stand up for you and your family. Our team of experienced lawyers will hold companies accountable and make sure you receive full compensation for the harm done to you.