Working With Your Lawyer In a Zantac® (Ranitidine) Case

Get the most out of the attorney-client relationship, and get the best result for your Zantac®/heartburn medication case.

A potential link between rantidine-based drugs like Zantac® and the development of cancer has prompted the filing of thousands of lawsuits against the manufacturers of these popular heartburn medications. When you're looking for a lawyer to help with your own Zantac® (ranitidine) case, you want to make sure you end up with the right person. And that expectation can work both ways.

Just as you want a good lawyer to fight for you, every lawyer wants a "good client." But how much of being a "good client" is actually within your control? Here are some tips on working with your lawyer to ensure the best outcome for your lawsuit over heartburn medication-related health problems.

Be Honest With Your Lawyer

During your first meetings with your lawyer, you'll discuss all relevant details of your case (and maybe even a few things you might not necessarily think are relevant), including:

  • the types of ranitidine products you've used
  • the frequency with which you used those products
  • whether your ranitidine use was recommended by a health care professional (whether by prescription or over-the-counter)
  • medications you used while taking ranitidine
  • the kinds of symptoms/health problems you're experiencing
  • other (pre-existing) conditions that might be relevant to your heartburn medication illness case
  • any medical treatment you've received in connection with your potential ranitidine-related illness
  • what your doctors have said about your condition (including any diagnosis of illness caused by your heartburn medication use) and your recovery.

It's important to share all information with your lawyer, including facts that might not be pleasant, or details that could feel too personal. These first talks are a two-way process. Just as you should be thinking about whether this lawyer is right for you, the lawyer will be deciding whether the case, and you, are a good fit. Learn more about how lawyers decide whether to take a personal injury case.

Remember, the lawyer won't get paid unless you receive a court judgment or if your Zantac®/ranitidine case settles. So the lawyer might ultimately decline your case if it looks like you're unlikely to win, or if the value of your heartburn medication illness case doesn't synch up with what it would cost to pursue it.

Be Responsive to Your Lawyer

Clients tend to get pretty upset when their lawyers don't return phone calls. And lawyers feel the same way. If you don't return your lawyer's phone calls, emails, or text messages promptly, you're not just wasting your lawyer's time, you could also be hurting your case.

Attend All Medical Appointments

Medical treatment is a huge aspect of any Zantac®/heartburn drug illness lawsuit. Your health care providers will note any appointment you miss, and if you miss too many, the manufacturer of the ranitidine product (and perhaps ultimately a jury) will assume that you must not have been as sick as you claim to be.

Cooperate in the Discovery Process

Once you file a Zantac® (ranitidine) lawsuit in court, the defendant will send your lawyer written questions called interrogatories, as well as document requests. Your lawyer will send these on to you, and you'll need to promptly answer the interrogatories and provide your lawyer with the requested documents, or your case could be dismissed. Help your lawyer, and help yourself. Respond to all discovery as quickly as you can.

Practice for your deposition. Your deposition is a very important step in your heartburn medication illness case. Your lawyer is there to help you prepare, to offer guidance during the proceedings, and even step in if the other side is taking a questionable approach. Follow your lawyer's advice and recommendations.

Don’t (Always) Blame Your Lawyer

Clients who feel that their Zantac® case isn't going well may assume it's the lawyer's fault. Sometimes a lawyer is to blame for bad news, but some problems originate with the client, and other obstacles are no one's fault.

If you sincerely believe there are problems in your case, it's time to stop worrying about being the "good client," and start asking questions. It's your case, not your lawyer's. You have an absolute right to be kept informed about what's going on. It may seem like you are being pesky by asking pointed questions about your case, but you need to protect your interests.

Communicate About Problems

A good client-lawyer relationship (like most others) is based on communication. State your concerns to your lawyer. Don't hold back. Find out what is holding up your heartburn medication illness case, or why your lawyer's outlook has changed. If the answers don't make sense or aren't satisfactory, there's nothing wrong with talking with another lawyer for a second opinion. You'll want to learn what a new lawyer would do differently in your case. If the answer is "not much," you'll want to think twice about changing lawyers, since a move like that would likely involve going over the same ground a second time.

In most instances, it makes sense to communicate your concerns with your lawyer so that you can find a suitable resolution, and get back to working toward the best result for your Zantac®/ranitidine case.

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