Complete Guide to Pharmaceutical Litigation - Adamson Ahdoot

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Pharmaceutical Litigation: Suing for Injuries and Side Effects

July 31, 2023 Alan Ahdoot
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The main role of pharmaceutical companies worldwide is to develop medication to treat various diseases. Although most of these drugs have improved the lives of countless people globally, some have done more harm than good.  In such cases, contacting an experienced pharmaceutical litigation attorney will be key to obtaining successful compensation.

In recent years, the amount of pharmaceutical lawsuits filed in the country has increased. Thousands of patients have experienced adverse side effects and other complications because of their medication. 

Luckily, there is hope. Patients injured by defective medication can seek justice with the help of a competent lawyer. In this blog, we’ll help you understand what pharmaceutical litigation is, how it works, and how you can get the compensation you deserve.

What is Pharmaceutical Litigation?

Pharmaceutical litigation refers to the product liability lawsuits patients can file for defective medication. If a patient suffers from adverse side effects of prescription medicine, they can file a claim against the manufacturer or doctor who prescribed it. 

The same rule applies when an over-the-counter (OTC) medicine harms you; you can hold the manufacturer or pharmacist who gave it to you responsible.

Every pharmaceutical lawsuit is different. However, there are three types of claims that victims commonly file:

Defective Manufacturing

Manufacturing defects can happen when the drug is being created. These defects may occur at any time during production, from the designing stage to the moment it reaches a customer. 

For example, if there’s a problem in the assembly line, the drug may become contaminated or tampered with. 

Another example of a manufacturing defect is mislabeling. If a product is mislabeled during production, a pharmacist may mistake it for another product.

Harmful Side Effects

According to the Food & Drug Administration, manufacturers should include warnings and precautions in their labels. 

It should also include any adverse side effects, especially if it can lead to the following outcomes:

  • Congenital anomaly
  • Persistent or significant in capacity
  • Inpatient hospitalization
  • Life-threatening events
  • Death

Defective Marketing 

If manufacturers fail to warn their customers of the side effects of their product, they can be charged with defective marketing or failure to warn claims. 

This claim also applies to doctors who fail to properly provide patients with enough information to make informed decisions about their medication. 

They may be charged with this claim if they don’t provide proper instructions on using the drug safely. It’s important for manufacturers and doctors to discuss dosage limits and appropriate time between doses. 

Determining Liability in Medication Lawsuits

Since there are many parties involved in making and distributing medicine, determining liability can be challenging. It depends on the type of defect that caused your injuries. But typically, there are three parties you can hold responsible for the damages you’ve suffered:

empty orange prescription bottles
Victims can hold three parties liable for their defective medication. 

Drug Manufacturers

The responsibility of drug manufacturers extends beyond the production of safe drugs to also include educating consumers on their proper usage. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has established stringent regulations for both over-the-counter and prescription drugs. Companies must conduct thorough testing and obtain FDA approval before bringing a drug to market.

However, in some instances, certain companies may prioritize speed over safety by expediently navigating the testing process. This approach can be hazardous, heightening the risk of severe side effects and compromising the drug’s effectiveness.


Doctors have a duty of care to their patients. Before prescribing a certain drug, they must warn you of its side effects and the recommended dosage. If they fail to do this, and it leads to an injury, you have every right to file a claim against them. 


Like doctors, pharmacists have a duty of care when distributing medicine. They should be trained to handle prescription drugs and have a thorough understanding of the medication they’re giving to patients.

If they mix up your prescription, and it causes adverse side effects to your health, they can be held liable in a court of law. 

What Compensation Can I Get From A Pharmaceutical Lawsuit?

When medication is defective, the consequences can be devastating. It can result in a hefty financial burden, as well as physical pain and emotional distress. But don’t worry, if you’ve been injured because of your medication, there are two types of compensation you can receive:

Economic Damages

Economic damages are quantifiable expenses. They include hospital bills, treatment, and rehabilitation. If your ability to work is affected by your injuries, you can also be compensated for the money you would have earned.

Non-economic Damages

These damages are a bit harder to measure but are still important nonetheless. They’re meant to compensate you for the pain and suffering you experienced because of the defective medication. It’s like apologizing for the emotional distress it caused.

In some cases, you can also ask for punitive damages. These damages are meant to be a warning and a deterrent to the at-fault party. However, getting this type of award can be challenging. You’ll need substantial evidence to convince the court.

How to File A Pharmaceutical Lawsuit

Filing claims against major pharmaceutical companies can be challenging. These businesses have plenty of experience dealing with claims similar to yours. If you want to increase your chances of getting the compensation you deserve, we suggest you work with attorneys specializing in pharmaceutical litigation.

A pharma lawyer will carefully study your case and help you gather the evidence you need to build a strong case. They also work with medical experts who will help explain how your defective medication caused you harm. With their knowledge and expertise, you’ll have a higher chance of winning against a major pharmaceutical company.

If you need help filing your claim, contact Adamson Ahdoot’s lawyers. Adamson Ahdoot is a full-service civil litigation firm with over 100 years of combined legal experience. 

With our help, you can trust that the best lawyers will handle your case with the intimacy and attention to detail of a boutique firm, with the expertise of a larger one.

Adamson Ahdoot promises to guide you through this difficult time in your life. Our pharma lawyers will support you every step of the way, from gathering evidence to negotiating your claim.

We proudly serve a diverse clientele with their car accident cases and offer free English and Spanish consultations. Call us at (800) 310-1606 and start building a robust claim today.

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