Nearly 3.7 million babies are born yearly in the U.S. Many of these infants will have uncomplicated births, but more than 10 percent will arrive prematurely. Preterm infants are born before 37 weeks of pregnancy, and these babies face increased health risks. One of those concerns is necrotizing enterocolitis (NEC), an intestinal illness with a mortality rate of up to 50%. It is the most common cause of death in preterm infants under two months old. There’s no known cause, but babies who drink cow’s milk baby formula have a higher chance of developing NEC compared to babies who are fed breast milk.
If your baby is diagnosed with NEC, your time will be consumed with their medical care. It is critical to treat the condition quickly before it progresses to sepsis, sharply decreasing the chance of survival. Even if treatment is successful and a child lives, the long-term effects can be significant. Infants with NEC are at high risk for developmental delays, malabsorption, and short bowel syndrome. As a parent, your priority is your child’s health and overall success, so it’s essential to consider hiring an NEC baby formula lawyer. There are numerous benefits to working with an attorney to recover damages from formula manufacturers.
The Baby Formula Link To NEC
Abbott Laboratories, the manufacturer of Similac, and Mead Johnson Nutrition, the manufacturer of Enfamil, dominate the U.S. formula market. These companies are also the focus of NEC lawsuits so far. Parents allege that the manufacturers claimed cow’s milk baby formula was as safe as human milk. Parents say they wouldn’t have chosen to give their babies Enfamil and Similac products if they’d known about the increased risk of NEC. Research has long shown a link between cow’s milk formula and necrotizing enterocolitis — some of the earliest reports are from the 1990s. One 2017 study said that “several studies have indicated that bovine milk–based infant formulas lead to a higher incidence of NEC in preterm infants than does human milk.” Still, formula manufacturers didn’t include a warning label and instead asserted that formula and breastmilk were equal options for premature babies.
Benefits Of Hiring An NEC Baby Formula Lawyer
The NEC baby formula lawsuits have been consolidated into multidistrict litigation (MDL). This process streamlines the process and transfers similar lawsuits to the same federal court presided over by the same judge. Additionally, MDL includes bellwether trials (also known as test trials). These cases allow both the defendants and plaintiffs to see how future claims might turn out in court and can be helpful in settlement discussions.
The court system can be complex, and a lawyer can help you pursue legal action without feeling overwhelmed by the intricacies. An NEC baby formula lawyer will do the hard work for you. There are other benefits that you should consider and discuss with any potential attorneys before choosing to hire them.
On average, a premature baby in a neonatal intensive care unit will incur medical bills of $3,000 a day. The costs are even higher for babies with NEC who need more complex interventions. Reimbursed medical bills aren’t the only compensation you’re eligible for, and a lawyer will help you determine other losses. You can seek payment for your child’s future medical expenses, and income lost to caretaking, and pain and suffering. An attorney will often help you get more money than you would’ve gotten alone.
You Don’t Pay If You Lose
Most personal injury law firms work on a contingency basis, meaning they don’t get paid unless you do. This means you aren’t out any money upfront, and the lawyer only makes money from your case if they help you reach a successful outcome. You should discuss the percentage ahead of time with your attorney.
Negotiate On Your Behalf
Attorneys have a comprehensive understanding of the law, allowing them to negotiate on your behalf more effectively. They can investigate on your behalf and will examine all relevant evidence — reading medical records, analyzing claims made in marketing material, or studying available literature to demonstrate a link between necrotizing enterocolitis and baby formula products. These negotiation tactics can help you win your case.
If your infant received an NEC diagnosis after consuming baby formula, contact Childers, Schlueter & Smith today. Our law firm has expert experience with baby formula injury cases and can help you fight for compensation. Call us at 1-800-641-0098 or contact us for a free case review.
At Childers, Schlueter & Smith, our attorneys are dedicated to helping victims of personal injury and/or those who have lost a loved one to wrongful death determine their legal options. We are a distinguished law firm that is driven by years of experience and exceptional results. If you or someone you know has been injured due to another’s negligence, please contact our firm to discuss your legal options.