A lawsuit is a legal action brought before a court in which one party sues another party for a specific claim or claims, such as a breach of contract or personal injury. The purpose of a lawsuit is to seek a legal remedy, such as monetary damages or an injunction, from the court.
Pharmaceutical companies have significant power in court battles due to the large amounts of money they can invest in legal representation and expert witnesses, as well as their ability to influence public opinion through advertising and lobbying, even when guilty of promoting a defective drug.
Additionally, pharmaceutical companies and drug manufacturers have a great deal of knowledge and experience navigating the complex regulations and legal procedures involved in bringing drugs to market and dealing with defective drug lawsuits. That, in turn, can give them an advantage in court.
A recent example of a pharmaceutical company being held accountable is the
Tepezza Hearing Loss Lawsuit against Horizon Therapeutics. People have been filing for damages against them because their drug “Tepezza” has caused permanent hearing damage in several individuals and a class action suit is highly likely.
Horizon Therapeutics has tried to downplay the seriousness of these allegations, but after evidence and results of studies kept coming to light, their website now lists hearing loss as one of the side effects with a 10% probability despite studies that have indicated the figure could be as high as 81%.
Table of Contents
How to File a Lawsuit or Class Action Lawsuit Against a Pharmaceutical Company
If you have experienced damages as a result of a product or service produced or offered by a pharmaceutical company, you can most definitely file a lawsuit and seek compensation. Some of the common types of damages that people file for are:
- Compensatory Damages
- Punitive Damages
- Consequential Damages
- Nominal Damages
- Injunctive Relief
- Specific Performance
In addition, if you have sufficient proof and evidence, you can even file for “emotional distress,” although such cases are significantly harder to win.
The process for a lawsuit against a pharmaceutical company can vary depending on the specific circumstances and jurisdiction. But generally, it follows these steps:
- Filing a complaint: The first step in a lawsuit is to file a complaint with the court, which sets forth the specific claims and demands for relief against the pharmaceutical company.
- Service of process: The complaint must be served on the defendant, which means that the company must be notified of the lawsuit and given a copy of the complaint.
- Answer: The defendant, in this case, the pharmaceutical company, must file a formal response to the complaint, known as an answer, within a specific time period, usually 20-30 days after being served.
- Discovery: After the answer is filed, the parties can conduct discovery, which is the process of gathering evidence and information from each other. This can include written questions, depositions, and document requests.
- Motion practice: The parties may file motions with the court, such as motions to dismiss or motions for summary judgment, asking the court to make a ruling on specific issues without going to trial.
- Trial: Usually, if a case isn’t resolved via a settlement, it goes to trial.
- Judgment: After the trial, the court will render a judgment in favor of one of the parties and may award damages or other relief.
- Appeal: Either party may appeal the judgment to a higher court if they believe that errors were made during the trial. It’s worth noting that this process can be time-consuming and complex, and it’s normal for legal battles to last for several years.
How to Increase Your Chances of Winning a Lawsuit?
A lot of people feel hopeless about the odds of winning a suit. This is natural, given how difficult cases against large corporations can be. However, it is clear that one can very much win a case, even against tough odds. Early last year, Johnson & Johnson and three drug distributors agreed to settle for $26 billion for their role in the opioid crisis.
Some of the ways to increase your chances of winning a lawsuit against a pharmaceutical company are
- Strong evidence: The most important factor in winning a lawsuit is having strong evidence to support your claims. This may include medical records, expert witness testimony, and documentation of any damages incurred.
- Experienced attorney: Hiring an experienced attorney who has handled similar cases in the past and has a good understanding of the legal issues and procedures involved can increase your chances of success.
- Strategic positioning: Positioning the case in a way that highlights the strength of your evidence and the weaknesses of the defendant’s case can also improve your chances of winning.
- Strong legal theory: Having a strong legal theory based on solid research and facts can also be important in increasing the chances of winning.
- Building a coalition: Building a coalition of other individuals or groups who have been affected by the same issue can also help strengthen your case.
- Timing: Filing a lawsuit at the right time, for example, when there is a lot of public attention on the issue, can also help increase the chances of winning.
Suing a pharmaceutical company can be a complex and time-consuming process, but it is possible for individuals and groups to hold these companies accountable for their actions. The key to a successful lawsuit is having strong evidence to support your claims, as well as an experienced attorney who understands the legal issues and procedures involved.