When an individual suffers from a medical illness, condition, or disease, they expect the medications they take will help them rather than making things worse. If a medication does have a deleterious effect, the responsible company or entity may be held liable for ensuing damages.

However, big pharmaceutical companies and hospitals usually have teams of lawyers to defend themselves, and the law that governs dangerous drugs in Illinois can be complicated for an injured person to interpret on their own. A Dolton dangerous drugs lawyer could help you fight for justice and seek compensation from the responsible party. Speak to a skilled personal injury attorney to learn about your legal options.

Determining Liability in Dolton

The first step in bringing a lawsuit over a dangerous drug is determining who is legally responsible for the injuries and damages that drug caused. Illinois law allows an affected individual to bring a suit against anyone who placed a dangerous drug in the chain of commerce—in other words, essentially anyone who played a part in the drug’s distribution. This could include the drug manufacturer, the medical professionals who prescribed the drug, and the hospital or pharmacy that filled the prescription.

The next step in a lawsuit is proving that the injured individual is entitled to compensation. In order to recover, injured individuals typically must prove either strict liability or legal negligence.

Strict Liability

Under this theory, a distributor or manufacturer is strictly liable for damages caused by anything they worked to place in the chain of commerce. If an individual or company is strictly liable, that means they are legally responsible regardless of their intent.

To prove strict liability, the plaintiff must show that:

  • The defect or dangerous condition was unreasonably dangerous
  • The defect or condition existed when the drug left the manufacturer’s control
  • There was an injury that was a result of a defect in the drug

Negligence

As an alternative to strict liability, a plaintiff may be able to claim legal negligence against certain parties. For example, a pharmacy that filled a prescription incorrectly might be traditionally negligent rather than strictly liable like a drug manufacturer would be. To prove negligence, the plaintiff’s attorney must prove the following:

  • The defendant had a duty of care
  • The defendant failed to honor that duty
  • The breach of duty directly caused injury to the plaintiff

How a Drug Could be Defective

For a dangerous drug claim to be valid, an individual must prove that the drug they ingested caused harm and damages. There are three distinct ways that a knowledgeable lawyer in Dolton could work to prove that a product was defective.

First, a plaintiff could argue that there was a design defect. Specifically, they must prove that the inherent design of a manufacturer’s product was unreasonably dangerous. In order to prove a design defect, the plaintiff must show that there was a safer way to make the same product that did not cause an unreasonable economic burden.

Second, they could show that there was a manufacturing defect. A manufacturing defect means that there was a defect in the manufacturing process that made a single incarnation of an otherwise functional product dangerous.

Finally, the plaintiff could argue that there was a warning or a marketing defect. For this type of case, the plaintiff must show that the product was dangerous and that the manufacturer did not adequately warn consumers about the danger their product imposed. A seasoned Dolton dangerous drugs lawyer could help one establish liability.

Consult with a Dolton Dangerous Drugs Attorney

The process of proving a dangerous drug caused you harm could be complicated, as it often requires a detailed understanding of medical documents and evidence as well as an in-depth knowledge of prescription drugs. A Dolton dangerous drugs lawyer could assist you in seeking compensation for your injuries.

A dedicated attorney could help you seek justice for all the harms you have endured. If you or a loved one were injured by a dangerous drug, call today to learn about your legal options.