Frequently Asked Questions
The law firm of Douglas & London, P.C., provides legal services to those harmed by others. We have particular experience representing victims and their families injured by acts of pharmaceutical and medical device manufacturers. Douglas & London, P.C. has the experience to help you or a loved one work investigate any potential claim you may have in this regard. However, for you or your loved one, this task can prove intimidating and strenuous. You may be constantly wondering what is expected of you in the recovery process. To help guide you through the process, we have provided the following Frequently Asked Questions section to hopefully answer the many questions you may have. Of course, the experienced staff at Douglas & London is here to speak with you at any time.
I’ve just made an inquiry about a potential products liability claim. What happens now?
As soon as you inquire with our firm, we will reach out to speak with you directly and obtain more information about your potential claim. If you inquire online, we contact you by phone at the number provided; if you wish to call our office directly, someone will be able to provide an evaluation of the potential claim immediately over the phone.
Each litigation is different, and so the criteria for what constitutes a viable claim changes depending on what product you used. However, in general we need to confirm:
- That you took the product in question;
- That you suffered a diagnosed injury; and
- A general timeline of events, including length of use and approximate date of diagnoses or injuries.
In some cases you may have a viable claim without having suffered an injury – for example if you used a product that has been recalled. Again, each litigation carries its own criteria, and the best way to find out whether you have a viable claim is to contact us immediately.
I was told there is no cost or obligation to me. What does this mean?
There will never be any out-of-pocket costs to you while we investigate and litigate your claim; we incur all costs associated with doing so. There is also never any obligation to you, and you can change your mind at any time about participating. Though we need you to sign a retainer in order to be authorized to investigate on your behalf, this is not binding: you are free at any time to decide that you would rather not pursue the claim. If that is the case we would close your file accordingly and you would not owe us anything.
How does your retainer work?
We operate on a contingency fee retainer basis. That means our attorney’s fees are contingent upon us securing you a settlement. If in the course of investigating your potential claim we find that it does not meet the viability crtieria, we would close out your file and you would not owe us anything.
I placed an inquiry online and now I have several different firms contacting me. Who are they and how did they get my information?
We do not at any time disseminate your information, but there are several explanations for why multiple law firms would be contacting you. When you inquire online your inquiry may reach several firms. We also work with many firms who refer their cases to us. They do so because your claim has the best chance at a successful resolution if it is handled by our firm. The reason for this is that mass tort product liability litigation is an incredibly complex field, one that requires specialized medical knowledge as well as legal know-how. Michael London, managing partner at Douglas & London, has been appointed by federal judges to serve on dozens of Plaintiff Steering Committees (which help coordinate all plaintiff work on a given litigation across all participating firms), and Gary Douglas has unmatched trial experience, including dozens of multi-million dollar verdicts and settlements.
As with everything, comparison shopping is a good idea! If several attorneys have contacted you, please know that it is not because we are passing along your information. We do not refer cases out and once you are a client of ours, you can rest assured that we will handle your claim from start to finish. We encourage you to check out the rest of our website to familiarize yourself with our track record of success.
If your claim comes to us through a referral attorney, it does not change the retainer agreement you signed and there is no “extra” charge to you. We have agreements with attorneys that send us cases for referral fees that are entirely independent of the agreement you signed when you retained counsel.
What is the difference between mass tort and class action?
Class action lawsuits occur when all the damages are essentially the same. Recent examples include the Ticketmaster class action suit that reimbursed people for cancelled concert tickets, or
What is a multi-district litigation?
Individual lawsuits that have been filed in federal courthouses will use a multi-district litigation (“MDL”) to speed up the process of handling these cases. It is similar to a class action lawsuit that when lawsuits involve complex issues affecting large numbers of people, the federal court system will consolidate and transfer these lawsuits to a single federal court. Unlike a class action, the result isn’t distributed equally but decided based on the severity of the effects or injuries to the individuals.
I’m not located in New York. Aren’t I better off going with a local attorney?
Not all firms have the expertise, the resources, or the network of medical experts that we do; when you are going up against powerful pharmaceutical corporations, there is strength in having trial attorneys who have experience representing clients all across the country against giant corporations.
I’ve sent the paperwork back to you guys, including retainer and authorization. What happens now?
Now the process of investigating your potential claim begins. Our experienced legal team will begin to collect your medical records, collecting evidence and filing a lawsuit on your behalf. At this point, it will still take a few years before the case sees a courtroom so hold tight. We will reach out to you with any updates or if we have questions about your information. If your address or contact information changes within this time, please reach out to us to update it so we can reach out to you with any emergencies.
How much work does being involved in this kind of litigation require? Will I have to travel or appear in court?
The great thing about a Mass Tort is that not every client involved in the MDL has to go to court. A mass tort usually consists of hundreds or thousands of victims and it would go on forever if every client had their day in court.
How long do these claims take to resolve?
There is no hard timeline on how long a case will take from the moment it is filed until a verdict or settlement could be reached but expect any personal injury or mass tort lawsuit you file to take roughly three to five years.