Since a landmark ruling in the Supreme Court last year hundreds of cases of pharmaceutical injury have been dismissed simply for the fact that the victims were given the generic brand of the medicine. The Supreme Court (in a 5-4 split decision) found that since manufacturers of generic medications are held to have the same labeling as their brand-name counterparts they are not liable for insufficient labeling that causes injury to a consumer since they are unable to alter the label themselves.

While it seems to make sense, this ruling basically allows generic manufacturers to market dangerous medications to consumers even if they are aware of the risks. If the brand name manufacturer does not label or is unaware of a particular risk they will be held liable but not the generic companies. If you have been injured as the result of taking a dangerous or defective drug speak with a knowledgeable New Jersey injury lawyer to find out your legal rights and options.

The New York Times recently profiled this issue and addressed the cases of those who have been adversely affected by the Supreme Court ruling. First they told the story of two women who both had to undergo amputation as the result of an anti-nausea drug they were given that is known to cause gangrene if it enters an artery. The only difference between the two women is that one was given the name brand of the medication, Phenergan, and was awarded $6,800,000—the other was given the generic form, promethazine, and received nothing.

The Supreme Court explained when they made their decision on this topic that if the FDA and Congress want generic brands to be held accountable then they have the power to change the laws on it. Giving generic companies the added responsibility of controlling their own labels will not only ensure that individuals taking these generic brands are receiving the best product but also that these companies will conduct their business with added care. Hiding behind the larger companies and blaming them for a mislabeling or inadequate labeling problem does not make it any less negligent.

If you or someone you love has suffered serious injury as the result of taking a dangerous pharmaceutical you may be entitled to compensation. Speak with a skilled personal injury lawyer in New Jersey today.

Blog submitted by Console and Hollawell Law Firm

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Paul d’Oliveira

Attorney Paul d’Oliveira has been practicing personal injury and disability law for over 30 years. He started his personal injury law practice in 1989 with two offices in Fall River, MA and East Providence, RI. Today his firm has 16 offices in RI and Southeastern, MA.

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