Medical negligence and product liability claims are overseen by our head litigation lawyer, John McCarthy. John has acted in a wide variety of personal injury, wrongful death, medical negligence and defective medical product cases at Circuit Court, High Court and Supreme Court level.
In the past, John has acted for dozens of victims who have been fitted with defective devices to treat medical conditions. In the early to mid-2010s, he brought multiple successful claims against DePuy Orthopaedics, Inc following the worldwide recall of their ASR XL acetabular total hip replacement system. More recently, John has been assisting litigants who have been fitted with defective DePuy Attune Knee Systems.
Bringing a Defective Medical Product Compensation Claim
Medical product liability is governed by a separate piece of European legislation implemented in Ireland under the Liability for Defective Products Act, 1991.
One of the big considerations in the context of defective product claims, as opposed to claims in negligence, is that there is a three-year limitation period rather than two years in the case of most other claims.
Defective product claims are made in what is referred to as a strict liability regime, which means that if you can show that the injury was caused by the product, you don’t have to show negligence or provide proof of the nature of the defect, the liability follows automatically.
While there is a three year liability period, there is a ten-year backstop, where if the product has been in circulation on the market for 10 years or more, then no liability attaches. In those circumstances, the question arises as to what “in circulation” actually means. You could have a situation where you have a medical device that was developed 20 years ago and if you were to rely on that date as the one that was first released on the market, then you’d be precluded from relying on the Liability for Defective Products Act. However, the better view appears to be that it’s the actual date when the individual product in question was first acquired on the market, i.e. sold to a consumer or put into use as part of a service or procedure.
Product liability is beneficial in so far as (a) its strict regulatory regime and (b), you’ve got a longer limitation period.
If you, or a member of your family, have suffered as a result of a defective medical device, contact our specialist solicitors today for further advice on how to go about instigating your claim.
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Some links relating to this topic that you may find useful.
- HPRA – Quality Defects and Recalls
- National Library of Medicine – Drug and medical device product failures and the stability of the pharmaceutical supply chain
- Medical Device Network – The world’s biggest medical device recalls
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About McCarthy + Co
With more than 30 years of experience in dealing with product liability and medical negligence claims, McCarthy + Co. has expertise in a wide variety of fields including faulty and defective medical devices. We are a family-run business, and we pride ourselves on offering honest, impartial and helpful advice.
Our offices are based in Dublin and Cork, but we work with clients throughout Ireland in locations ranging from Galway to Waterford. You can count on us for legal advice, guidance and assistance on any form of personal injury.
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Flor McCarthy wears multiple hats, not only as the managing partner of one of Ireland’s leading law firms, but also as an author, speaker and an acknowledged expert in client service, innovation and marketing.
Beginning his academic journey at UCC, Flor furthered his education with a master’s degree in law from UCD. After gaining valuable experience as a solicitor in Dublin, the allure of home and the family brought him back to West Cork to contribute his expertise to the family business.
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John McCarthy is a seasoned solicitor with almost 20 years of experience, specialises in personal injury and medical negligence claims, focusing particularly on high-value compensation cases. His extensive litigation experience spans Circuit Court, High Court and Supreme Court levels.
John's practice involves a diverse range of cases, from personal injury and wrongful death to property damage, defective products, professional negligence and judicial reviews.