Groups » Dealing with Defective Medical Drug and Device Lawsuits

Drugs and medical devices are designed in the best interest of human beings. However, often certain drugs and medical devices fail to perform in the desired manner and cause harm instead.

A classic example of such a product is Zofran, a powerful anti-nausea drug, which resulted in birth defects in babies when used by pregnant women, especially during the first trimester. Several women filed a class action lawsuit against the manufacturers of Zofran, claiming that the company failed to warn them and continued to promote the drug despite knowing about the risks.

If you have suffered due to a defective drug or medical device, you can file a product liability lawsuit with help of an experienced lawyer. Defective drug laws fall under product liability law and help people who have suffered damages or injuries from defective drugs and/or medical devices.

However, before proceeding to the court, you need to know about who to sue in case of defective product injuries and how to file a class action to ensure the best outcome.

Who to Sue for Defective Drugs and Medical Devices

The law requires pharmaceutical companies to carry out exhaustive clinical trial processes to test products for safety, toxicity, side effects, and efficacy before selling them to consumers. The companies are also required to get a formal approval from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) before the products can be released in the market. However, some companies fail to stick to these regulations and release medical products without prior testing. This results in several side-effects, some severe and others minor. In certain cases, defective drugs can also result in death.

The defects in medical products (drugs and medical devices) can be categorized as follows:

Manufacturing defects – These include products that were improperly manufactured.

Design defects – These include products that were properly manufactured, but have a dangerous design that can injure the patients using them.

Defective marketing (failure to warn) – When marketing a medical product, companies are required to provide appropriate warnings, instructions, or recommendations concerning the use of the drug or device. Failing to do so is considered as breach of duty.

A drug-or-medical-device-related product liability case can be filed against everyone involved in the ‘chain of distribution’ of the drug or medical device. So a lawsuit can be filed against:

● The Manufacturer
● Testing Laboratories
● Pharmaceutical Marketing Companies
● Doctors
● Hospital/Clinics
● Pharmacy

Each of the above entities is involved in the distribution, marketing and recommendation of the defective products, so a lawsuit can be filed against one or all of them.

How to File a Class Action for Defective Drug and Medical Device

If a defective product causes harm or injury to a large number of people, they can collectively file a case against the company, individual or entity. A class action is a lawsuit where a large group of people with similar injuries or damages sue one or more people, corporations or other entities. According to, "A class action is the best option for suing one or a few defendants when there are too many potential plaintiffs to include everyone in a standard personal injury lawsuit."

One or a few plaintiffs act as representatives of the group of people filing the litigation, while the other plaintiffs are contacted when it’s time to collect their share of the damages awarded or if they have a chance to opt out. However, a class action must be filed with help of an experienced lawyer, since certain requirements need to be fulfilled for the court to consider the lawsuit as valid. The laws differ from state to state, so make sure you hire a lawyer who is well-versed with product liability laws in your state. For instance, if you are filing a defective drug class action in Indianapolis, it is best to work with one of the seasoned Indianapolis defective medical drug and device litigation lawyers.

Here is how a class action can be filed:

● A complaint is lodged by a lawyer (on behalf of the plaintiffs).
● On receiving the complaint, the defendant responds with an answer, motion to dismiss or other legal pleadings.
● Both, plaintiff(s) and defendant(s) disclose evidences to prove their cases.
● The plaintiff(s) or their lawyer files a motion to certify the case as class action.
● Defendant(s) files opposing briefs to the plaintiff(s) motion.
● The judge certifies or denies the class action.
● If certified, a notification is sent to the prospective claimants who must choose whether they want to continue or opt-out of the litigation.
● The trial starts.
● The verdict is given.
● The class action members are requested to submit claims with supporting documents.
● Finally, the proceeds are distributed among the claimants and the case is closed.


There have been several instances where drugs and medical devices have caused considerable damage to the people using them. If you are one of these people, you must take the necessary steps to punish the parties involved in the manufacturing and the distribution of the defective products to not only protect yourself, but also ensure safety and relief for all those who may be harmed by the defective product(s).

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