At Burg Simpson, we have represented thousands of individuals who have suffered serious side effects after taking prescription medicines, or who have been injured as a result of defective medical devices. Our lawyers have been selected to lead high profile litigation involving some of the world’s largest pharmaceutical companies, and have been very successful in winning.
This is a difficult question to answer because it depends on so many factors. Sometimes a settlement can be reached quickly without having to file a lawsuit if the liability is clear and the injuries are undisputed. If a lawsuit must be brought, then settlement will typically be delayed by many months while the parties engage in discovery.
Many times, cases will settle very close to trial, which can be a year or more after the case is filed. If a verdict is rendered in your favor, and a judgment is entered, the Defendant will sometimes pay or settle at that time, but many times the Defendant will appeal the judgment, in which case the ultimate recovery can be delayed by several years while the case proceeds through the appeal process. If you lose at trial, you have the right to appeal.
Again, the process can take several years, and if you win the appeal, you will likely need to go through another trial, and potentially, another appeal. If may be many years until you obtain compensation for your injuries.
There are many, many factors that go into evaluating what any particular claim is worth. Each case is different and it is impossible to provide a specific dollar figure for any claim. No attorney can ever guarantee you will obtain compensation for your claim or that you will receive any certain amount of compensation. That being said, the experienced injury attorneys at Burg Simpson have vast experience in most every kind of dangerous drug and defective medical devices claim. We can provide you with an honest evaluation of your claim and provide you with an assessment of what your claim may be worth.
Some of the factors that can affect a claim’s worth include the nature and extent of the injury, the nature and extent of medical treatment received, the nature and extent of preexisting medical problems, the nature and extent of the liability of each person involved, the ability of the injured person to return to that work, the need for future medical and other life care needs, the location where the injury occurred, and the amount on insurance available, to name a few.
When a person is unable to go back to work because of an injury, it can cause a significant economic loss that can be worth tens of thousands, hundreds of thousands, or even millions of dollars depending on the job and the remaining work life of the injured individual. For example, a surgeon who can no longer perform as a doctor because of an injury may have many millions of dollars in future lost income over his lifetime. Even a construction worker making $30,000 per year can easily have many hundreds of thousands of dollars in lost income. Consider also that the nature of the person's work may greatly impact the value of a claim. An accountant who breaks her leg in a car crash may not have significant lost income, since she can still likely perform her duties as an accountant. But a concert pianist who breaks his hand may be prevented from ever playing piano again. The impact on employment is a significant factor in evaluating a claim’s worth.
Where an injury occurs can be a factor in a claim’s worth. This is because where an injury occurs may be where a lawsuit must be brought. The laws in each state vary, and some states protect their citizens more than others. Some states allow unlimited recovery of “non-economic damages,” like pain and suffering, while some states severely limit the recovery of non-economic damages. The laws in each state regarding negligence, comparative fault, and other liability issues may also affect the value of the claim. For claims that must be clearly brought in one state, the value of the claim may be affected by which county the claim is brought in. Some counties have more conservative jurors, while others are more liberal. As there may be several states–or counties within a state–in which a claim may be brought, it is important to evaluate all of those potential venues before filing a lawsuit.
Most lawsuits end up settling before trial. So statistically the chance that you will actually go to trial is actually quite low. Settlement is an important aspect of any lawsuit and should be considered by you using your attorney’s sound advice. But you have a right to go to trial and a right to have your case heard by a jury. You do not have to settle your case if you think that you are not being offered enough compensation for your injuries. Your attorneys will provide you their legal advice and opinions as to the merits of your case, your chances at trial, and their opinions as to whether a settlement offer should be seriously considered or rejected.
Settlement has the advantage of certainty—you are not relying on a jury to decide the fate of your case. The advantage of taking a case to a jury is the ability to tell your story and to potentially have the jury award you more than what is being offered to settle your claim. Some claims should be settled. Other claims should be taken to a jury. Each case must be evaluated on its own merits in making that decision. Sometimes the defense will refuse to talk settlement, in which case you may have no choice but to take your case to a jury. But generally, whether you settle or take your case to trial is up to you.
You are not required to hire a lawyer. As an individual, you can represent yourself in a court of law. But you must understand that the law can be very confusing. There are many rules applicable to court proceedings. Many laws and rules, if not complied with, can result in your case being barred or dismissed. A lawyer is trained to analyze laws and rules and will advise you concerning the upsides and downsides to actions that may affect your legal rights. Your lawyer's job is protection of your legal rights.
Also, a lawyer trained and experienced in negotiation is likely to obtain a much better settlement than if you were to try to settle a case on your own. And many times a defendant or insurance company will not do anything at all until a lawyer is threatening them or their insured with a lawsuit. Your case may essentially be worth nothing until you actually hire a lawyer who can stand up for your rights.
And should you have to go to trial, a good lawyer is a necessity. Trial and pretrial procedures are vast and complex; someone who is not familiar with all of them is likely to trip up and lose rights and opportunities to present their best case to a jury. A lawyer knows the system, knows the judges, and knows how to present a case to a jury.
No. We offer a free, no-obligation case evaluation to those who have been injured by a drug or dangerous device. If necessary, we will obtain your medical records and we will conduct the review necessary to determine whether or not we can help you.
Our mass tort fee agreements are done on a contingency fee basis. This means that our fee is determined as a percentage of your recovery. We only receive a fee for our work if we obtain a recovery for you.
If you do not receive a recovery, then you owe us nothing. If you decide to hire us to pursue your claim, all of this will be explained in a written fee agreement.
We advance the money for all litigation costs associated with pursuing your claim (such as filing fees, medical records retrieval, and expert costs). We receive reimbursement for these costs out of any recovery. If you do not receive a recovery, then you owe us nothing.
Yes. Some of our senior shareholders have been appointed to lead national litigation against several drug and device manufacturing companies.
We have the combination of powerful resources and the reputation and expertise to give you a great chance for a successful outcome.