Evidence Needed for an Opioid Injury Case

Any time a person files a personal injury claim to hold someone liable for negligence, they must have evidence to substantiate their claim. In opioid cases, which are considered medical malpractice claims, this evidence is crucial yet, quite difficult to obtain. If you or a loved one has suffered losses as a result of opioid use, it is important that you speak to a California personal injury lawyer that could help you collect the necessary evidence. The most important types of evidence used in an opioid case are found below.

Expert Medical Witness Testimony

California does not require a certificate of merit the way many other states do. However, to prove an opioid case, victims of addiction must obtain medical witness testimony. Many people think this testimony and a certificate of merit are the same thing, but they are not.

A certificate of merit is a sworn statement by a medical expert who works, or has worked, in the same field of medicine as the negligent party. The certificate of merit must be filed along with the original claim before the case can proceed.

Expert medical witness testimony is also sworn testimony by a medical professional that can recognize when another doctor has not provided the acceptable standard of care. This testimony can include the fact that a doctor prescribed more of the drug that was necessary, or that the doctor failed to identify signs of addiction in a patient. However, this sworn statement does not need to be filed at the same time the claim is filed with the courts.

Testimony Against a Pharmaceutical Company

In some cases, a pharmaceutical company may also be wholly or partially liable for injuries caused by opioids. In the past, these companies have been found guilty of bribing doctors so they will prescribe more of a certain medication. This is very difficult for patients to prove on their own. However, a lawyer could subpoena witnesses that work for the pharmaceutical company that can testify that they saw or knew of the bribes the company was offering.

Medical Evidence

Medical records are essential to any medical malpractice case, and claims involving injuries due to opioids are no different. Copies of prescriptions that indicate the dosage prescribed, the date the medication was prescribed, and other important information could all help prove that a doctor was negligent in prescribing the drug.

Evidence of Losses

In addition to proving that a doctor or pharmaceutical company was negligent, individuals suffering from injuries due to opioids must also prove their damages. This means they must prove that they suffered losses.

There are many types of evidence that can prove damages. Pay stubs can prove the wages a person has lost, while medical bills can prove the cost of treatment a person had to receive to recover from their injuries. Invoices from a rehabilitative center can also prove the cost of counseling a person underwent to recover from their addiction.

A California Medical Malpractice Lawyer Could Help Collect Evidence

Collecting evidence in an opioid case is typically very difficult for individuals suffering from opioid injuries. A California personal injury lawyer could subpoena witnesses, reach out to their network of experts, and gather medical evidence and other documentation while you recover from your injuries. If you or a loved one has suffered damages as a result of an opioid addiction, call us today so we can start reviewing your claim.