For every social problem, there will inevitably be different approaches people take to solve them. Such efforts may come from government, nonprofit, and private sector actors. It’s interesting when actors from these sectors join together behind a common cause and collaborate. A social problem getting a lot of press lately is the opioid epidemic. We recently read a story about how government entities in the state of Louisiana are banding together to sue the big drug companies for their opioid products. This new wave of litigation rests on a belief that opioid addiction is an epidemic perpetrated by drug makers.
Where is the Fight?
According to TheAdvocate.com’s Tyler Bridges, some government agencies have already jumped on board (including 13 sheriffs). There are still decisions of whether to join the movement by the remaining Louisiana sheriffs. Not to mention parish presidents, police juries, district attorneys, state agencies, and other public officials. This new movement has created a whole new wave of potential clients for personal injury lawyers in Louisiana despite the impetus to fight the opioid epidemic.
That being said, if the lawsuits are successful against U.S. drug makers, personal injury lawyers in Louisiana will stand to reap big returns. These attorneys typically earn a larger percentage when going to court than they do when they settle out of court. However, going to court escalates the costs of a case. And sometimes, personal injury lawyers must borrow capital to cover litigation expenses when they surpass what they bargained for. In other situations, law firms might partner with bigger firms to offset their litigation costs. Taking on Big Pharma isn’t cheap in any state.
The Burden of Proof
We like to use the case of the car accident to demonstrate all of the pressure that falls upon personal injury lawyers in every state. Even when we can easily identify the at-fault driver in a car crash case, we must show that he or she was not showing a reasonable duty of care at the time of the accident. We have to demonstrate that the defendant driver’s actions in a manner other than one that was reasonable resulted in our client’s injuries and pain and suffering. We have to collect medical evidence and other proof that the plaintiff was permanently injured through the defendant’s lack of attention to duty of care. This may involve convincing a jury that the defendant was at-fault.
Sometimes, the reality ends up being that the at-fault and the plaintiff bore some responsibility for the accident. Thus, the disposition of the court case becomes one of comparative negligence. In this kind of result, each party bears a percentage of responsibility for the legal costs.
What Personal Injury Means Today
The burden of proof falls to plaintiffs whether you want to file a lawsuit against Big Pharma or a defendant driver. That’s why we view our work as personal injury lawyers as serving an important social function. Without the potential for lawsuits in civil courts, for-profit corporations like drug manufacturers could begin to operate above the law. It is our job to hold them accountable, especially as the opioid epidemic continues to grow worse. We don’t feel that harmful business practices are socially acceptable, especially when executives knowingly impose them on consumers. Likewise, defendant drivers shouldn’t be allowed to get away with negligence following a motor vehicle accident.
We want to advocate for the rights of personal injury victims. Regardless of the ways in which the defendants in their cases have harmed them, they deserve our help. This means that we aggregate substantial resources or we won’t be able to achieve the best outcomes for our clients. It is a careful process that we use to research the potential assets of defendants and then show how our clients deserve to be compensated from those assets for their damages.
For more information, please contact us today.