Depakote Lawsuit FAQ
Why did the Food and Drug Administration issue a warning about Depakote?
The FDA issued a warning in December 2009 due to a link between Depakote and and increased risk of birth defects. The agency stated that women who used Depakote during pregnancy are more likely than users of other anti-epilepsy drugs to give birth to a child with neural tube defects or other types of birth defects.
What are neural tube defects?
Neural tube defects are a type of birth defect caused by the underdevelopment of the neural tube—a fetal structure that normally develops into the brain, skull and spinal column during pregnancy. The two most common types of neural tube defects are spina bifida (failure of the protective tube around the spine to close fully) and anencephaly (partial or total absence of the brain or skull).
Is the risk of birth defects from Depakote greater at certain times during pregnancy?
According to a study published in the New England Journal of Medicine, the use of Depakote during the first trimester increases the risk of birth defects compared to later use during pregnancy. However, children born to women who use Depakote during the later trimesters may still face an increased risk of birth defects.
Has the FDA recalled Depakote?
Despite warning about the drug’s link with neural tube defects, the FDA has not announced any plans to issue a Depakote recall.
Have any Depakote lawsuits been filed?
Lawyers for Depakote users have filed dozens of lawsuits alleging that the drug caused neural tube defects and other birth defects after being taken during pregnancy. Abbott Laboratories, the drug’s manufacturer, has already paid $1.3 billion in settlements for Depakote lawsuits filed by the federal government concerning the illegal marketing of the drug.
Am I eligible to receive a settlement or join a class action?
Although Abbott has agreed to settle the Depakote lawsuits filed by the federal government, as of February 2012, there have not been any settlements in the individual lawsuits filed by Depakote users. There have also been no class action lawsuits filed as of this date. Only a Depakote attorney can advise you about your legal rights concerning birth defects from Depakote.
How can I get help from a Depakote lawyer?
If you or a loved one used Depakote during pregnancy and gave birth to a child with neural tube defects or other birth defects, you may be eligible to file a lawsuit. For a free legal consultation, contact the lawyers at Hissey Kientz, LLP by calling toll-free at 1-866-275-4454, or by filling out the free case evaluation form located on this page.