The Advocate: Guide To Hiring A Lawyer For Defective Medical Devices
The defective medical device industry is one that has seen an increase in the number of claims filed as the demand for these devices increases. The demand for these products has also increased because of the benefits. For example, a poorly designed knee prosthetic can make people a lot more active and able to do things that they were not able to do before the device was implanted.
What Is A Defective Medical Device?
Defective medical devices fall into two main categories: Class I and Class II.
Class I devices are those that are found to be defective in the manufacturing process but do not have a significant risk of harm or function abnormally. These are devices that generally cause a minor injury. In 2002, Congress passed the Class I Medical Device Safety Act which gave companies a four-year period of time to develop and implement a recall procedure for Class I devices. The total recall rate for Class I medical devices has been reported as only 1 percent.
Class II medical devices are those that are found to be defective in the manufacturing process or have a significant risk of harm. These are devices that can cause moderate to severe injuries. A Class II recall is required for these devices within 30 days of the date of the initial finding of defect or after the manufacturer or distributor has been notified by the FDA of a public health threat.
A great example of this is the Exactech joint replacement personal injury lawsuits. Users are claiming that the medical device has unusual wear and tear that’s causing them undue distress in their daily lives. Some have decided to file lawsuits against the manufacturer in hopes that they will receive compensation for their suffering.
Compensation for Injury Caused By Defective Medical Device
The amount of compensation for injury caused by defective medical devices is determined by the severity of the injury and the ability of the claimant to prove that their injuries are due to the defective device. In addition, the claimant will have to demonstrate that they have suffered an injury as a result of the medical device.
The amount of compensation is also determined by the type of injury and the extent to which it caused the person’s loss of function or affected the quality of their health. The compensation range is quite wide and ranges between $250,000 and $3.5 million depending on the severity and type of injury. If a person was blinded, their allowable claims will be even higher.
Requirements for Filing a Lawsuit For Claim Against Medical Device Manufacturer or Distributor
A lawsuit against a manufacturer or distributor can only be filed within three years from when the claimant knew or should have known about the defect.
The three-year period does not begin until after the claimant has given notice to the manufacturer or distributor and made a reasonable effort to notify them of the defect. In addition, if you have attempted to notify them, you must have also attempted to get a refund from them. If you have not been able to get either, you may have no case against the manufacturer and therefore cannot file a lawsuit against them.
The Statute of Limitations
The statute of limitations is the length of time that you have to file a lawsuit after an injury was sustained. It is different than the statute of repose which is what determines when an action must be brought in court and limits when you must bring an action to get compensation for injury. The statute of limitations is also different from what you have to file your claim with your insurance company if you are suing them, as they will have their own statutes of limitation that may be longer than what is allowed in your state.
What Does It Cost to Hire a Lawyer?
Typical fees for a lawyer could vary from as low as $1,000 to over $150,000 depending on many factors including the complexity of your case and whether you need an expert witness or not. In many cases, clients will hire a lawyer from their state bar association as most states require that lawyers file a malpractice claim with their state bar before they can represent you in court. You may want to contact your state bar association for information about how much it typically costs in your state to hire an attorney.
How Long Does It Take to File a Lawsuit?
Most lawsuits take between six and 12 months to file depending on your state’s laws regarding how long time you have to file suit after sustaining an injury and whether you have filed with your insurance company first. If you are suing your insurance company, they may not proceed until they have received notice from you that they have to defend against your claim. You should make sure that you file suit with them first because this will give them time to review your claim before they go back to you and tell you what they are going to need from you in order for them to defend against your claim.
Also, if you sue your insurance company first, you must give them notice that you intend to file suit against them as soon as possible after they tell you that they will not defend against your claim. This gives them time to prepare their defense against your claim so that you do not end up having to use all of your money on legal fees instead of being able to collect damages for your injuries.
Each of these factors can have a significant impact on the speed and success of your claim, so it is important to consult with a lawyer as soon as you are injured by a defective medical device.