The joy of having a baby can quickly turn into a nightmare if the delivery happens too soon. Premature babies are born before 37 weeks of pregnancy, leaving them vulnerable to several health conditions. Your little one may have to spend weeks in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) and battle complications and infections to survive.
In 2021, 1 of every 10 infants born in the US were premature, an increase of 4% from the previous year. Your baby could be a part of these statistics, even if you take the best precautions and care during pregnancy. Besides the post-birth complications, feeding is another challenge for preterm infants. They cannot breastfeed, making formula-feeding a viable option.
Unfortunately, formula feeding puts them at risk of necrotizing enterocolitis (NEC), a rare and deadly intestinal disorder. Brands like Enfamil and Similac have been on the wrong side in this context. As a parent, you can seek compensation for your child’s suffering, but fighting against manufacturers like Abbott and Mead Johnson sounds too big a battle.
Your baby deserves justice, and you should pursue it. Here are some inspiring insights to help.
NEC Baby Formula Lawsuits: An Overview
Research shows that bovine-based baby formulas can lead to NEC in premature babies. NEC is a rare infection, but it can turn life-threatening by causing inflammation, deadly infections, and severe damage to intestinal tissue. Death is also possible, with mortality ranging from 10% to 50%. Any infant may suffer from the condition, but those born premature or sick are more likely to get it.
Parents are now suing baby formula manufacturers for failing to warn consumers about the potential risk of NEC. According to the latest NEC lawsuit update, the infant formula multidistrict litigation (MDL) has come a long way, reaching triple the size since the beginning of 2023. The number of cases was fewer than a hundred early in the year, but more and more parents are raising voices against baby formula brands.
According to TorHoerman Law, a toxic baby formula lawsuit is a product liability claim where the manufacturer fails to warn about the potential dangers. Parents should not be intimidated by the thought of standing against big brands and fighting for justice and compensation.
Individual Lawsuits or Class Action
Similac and Enfamil are the main formula brands facing NEC lawsuits. These products are manufactured by Abbott Laboratories and Mead Johnson respectively. While filing a compensation claim against such leading names may sound challenging, it is actually possible to establish their fault and get the justice your baby deserves. A seasoned lawyer with a relevant track record can show you the way.
You can file an individual lawsuit or join a class-action lawsuit, depending on the specific circumstances of your case. With individual lawsuits, you have more control over your litigation process, but it may entail higher legal costs. Conversely, class actions enable you to sue collectively with other parents holding the same manufacturer responsible. It lowers your cost and increases the probability of a favorable outcome.
Getting a Rightful Compensation
While filing a lawsuit against a brand might seem to be your biggest challenge, it can actually work in your favor. NEC lawsuits can lead to a significant settlement because brands want to save their reputation in the long run. They may have to pay even more if found liable in court. Parents can expect enough compensation to cover the following:
- Medical bills for treatment and surgeries
- Pain and suffering of the child
- Emotional distress suffered by the family
- Other costs incurred while the baby was sick
Some children with severe complications of NEC may never recover and live a lower quality of life. They may develop long-term complications such as short bowel syndrome and neurodevelopmental impairment. The court will factor future medical costs for these conditions into the settlement, leading to hefty compensation.
Besides compensating the victims, these lawsuits serve as a deterrent for brands, prompting them to prioritize product safety. They may take the defective products off the market and invest in stringent testing and quality control measures. In this way, parents suing these culprits ensure the safety of other babies and families in the future.
The Bottom Line
Seeking legal recourse against brands selling NEC-causing baby formula may seem like a long journey for parents. It is even more challenging when you have a baby struggling to survive because the emotional toll of the situation is huge.
But you must raise a voice and seek justice and compensation for your little one. Beyond ensuring compensation for better care of your baby, you will make a difference for other babies and parents.