Zantac Lawsuit – Frequently Asked Questions

June 12, 2020

If you or a loved one took Zantac and were unfortunately diagnosed with cancer the Zantac lawyers at Brown, LLC would like to discuss your options with you to seek justice and answer all the questions you might have about the Zantac litigation.  Here are some of the most commonly asked questions and answers.

What are the Zantac Cancer Lawsuit settlement amounts?  As of this writing in June 2020, there are no Zantac settlements.  If you are reading elsewhere on the internet that the matter has settled, then I encourage you to challenge the entity alleging it has settled and to bring it to our attention as well.  

Is the Zantac lawsuit a class action?  No.  It is not a class action.  Some sites call it a Zantac class action but if you’ve been physically harmed by a bad product, the class action mechanism is generally a poor vehicle for resolution.  There are two components to having to proof your Zantac case, the first that Zantac is an unsafe drug.  The FDA recalled Zantac from the market since it was linked to elevated levels of NDMA, a substance that causes cancer.  So while this Zantac law firm believes it will be able to establish the general liability that Zantac is unsafe, there is more to the proofs than that as there is the issue of individual causation.  Issues of general liability are generally suitable to litigate as a class action since every person’s case rises or falls regarding the general theories and proofs.  However, when a physical injury is involved, there is the issue of individual causation, which is even if you used Zantac, could the cancer be caused by something other than the Zantac.  Our Zantac trial lawyers will argue that regardless, Zantac with elevated NDMA increased the risk of cancer so the manufacturer must be held accountable.  The Defendants will try to pick apart individual causation by looking to a family history of cancer and other habits like smoking that could lead to cancer and only exposures that could cause cancer.

Since every unfortunate user of Zantac may now have an elevated risk of cancer, if one is diagnosed with cancer after long-term Zantac usage, the Defendants will try to put the unfortunate person diagnosed with cancer on trial and blame other factors.  Since each individual has case specific liability issues and defenses, the day in Court is an individual one for each plaintiff.  However, the general causation issues and proofs are still critical to everyone’s case.  So, the Court can throw out everyone’s case if there is not sufficient proof of general liability, but even if you overcome that, you still need to prove individually that Zantac caused your particular cancer.

The head lawyer at Brown, LLC has been fighting for people for over two decades and is used to combatting these defense tactics and establishing liability.  Do not be intimidated by the process.  If you used Zantac and were diagnosed with cancer, you should obtain legal representation sooner rather than later, even if it’s not our firm.

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Is the Zantac lawsuit a case where the lawyers make all the money at the end of the day?  The Zantac action resembles a consolidation of injury cases.  In personal injury matters, the lawyers take a percentage of the recovery if successful.  There are also concepts like the common benefit fund and liens to deal with.   For example, let’s say there’s ultimately 20,000 Zantac lawsuits, that each case settles for $100,000 a case, and your lawyer is on a 40% contingency meaning the law firm takes 40% of the recovery after expenses.  The raw math is that the client will receive $60,000 and the law firm $40,000.  For most firms like ours, if the case is unsuccessful, you don’t owe the law firm anything, but if it prevails then the expenses are reimbursed to the firm.  The law firm does not make any money at the costs. Some firms take out bank loans for the costs for the case and charge the client the interest and fees on the costs.  Our firm does not.   The common benefit fee at the end of the day is reimbursement for the costs to the client and the time to the common benefit lawyers for establishing general liability.  It’s thought of in terms of points (percentage).  So, if the general costs for litigating the 20,000 cases were $10,000,000 then each client would have to pay $500 or .5 towards the general costs of the litigation.   Also, from the fee of the law firm, money is taken for time spent by the Zantac law firms working up the common benefit of general liability.  If it is a long, hard fought process, there are 10 points taken from the fee, then the split between you and the firm remains the same; the client receives $60,000 minus costs including the $500 common benefit costs but your firm would only receive a 30% fee, $30,000 and have to cede $10,000 of its fee to the common benefit.  At the end of the day that doesn’t affect your portion, but it still is important to understand that the firm you’ve retained to handle your Zantac case is not making as much as you think in litigating the case.  Especially, if you factor in the firm’s overhead and that for every mass tort case that wins, three of them lose. 

Teasing out further the $60,000 recovery, minus $500 for the common benefit and for argument’s sake $1,000 of other Zantac litigation costs.  Those costs could be a variety of things from $400 for the filing fee to expensive costs for medical records, especially if there’s extensive cancer treatment.  The law firm doesn’t make money off the costs and firm’s like ours are frugal, without compromising the integrity of the case.  At the end of the day, if the case is lost, you don’t have to reimburse our firm, but other firm’s might require this so you should look into the language of the Zantac retainer.  Netting out the math that would leave $58,500 for the clients’ portion of recovery out of which depending on your contract with your medical insurance or if you have Medicare of Medicaid, they might put a lien on the recovery arguing they are entitled to a portion of the clients’ Zantac settlement amount for costs they outlaid for treatment.   Generally, a well-constructed mass tort resolution will have a lien resolution program in place to work through these issues and clear the liens. 

Do you have a question about the Zantac litigation that we haven’t answered here?  There’s a lot more to the case than we can type!  If you or a loved one have questions about the Zantac cancer link and want to know your rights, please call our Zantac Lawyers at (877) 561-0000 to speak with our Zantac Law Firm and receive a free, confidential consultation.