Legal Q&A

Answers to common legal questions about accidental injury, negligence, and insurance.
Question: I was given the wrong prescription medicine from a pharmacy while doctor prescribed a different one, what are my rights?

My doctor prescribed a medicine for my 4-year old son for his cold issues. Pharmacy provided a wrong one which my son kept using for two months. After that I figured out that pharmacy gave a wrong medicine and instantly reported it to the doctor and pharmacy both. Pharmacy agreed that they made a mistake. What legal action can I take? If they offer compensation, how much can I ask for it in dollar amount?

Answer:

I wish I could tell you that these types of occurrences are uncommon, but the truth is that licensed medical professionals are just as susceptible to human error as anyone else. Unless the act was intentional, the majority of these claims are based on legal theory of negligence.

Negligence requires that you prove that the at-fault party had a responsibility to you, and that their failure to live up to that responsibility caused you harm.

Most people focus on the first part and forget that they need to prove damages. In your case, it is clear from the facts that the pharmacy was negligent by selling you the wrong medication. But what exactly are your damages? Did you incur any additional medical expenses as a direct result of your child being given the wrong medication? Did any doctor tell you that your son suffered bodily harm from consuming the wrong medication?

Without any damages, the pharmacy is not likely to offer you any compensation.

Legally speaking, you can file a lawsuit against the pharmacy, and you can ask for any amount that you feel is fair. If you claim under $5,000.00, you would be able to file the lawsuit in small claims court and handle the case without the assistance of an attorney. Before you decide to go at it alone, I strongly suggest calling my office for a free consultation and complete analysis of your case. I look forward to hearing from you.

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