Your baby’s health is the most important thing to you. That’s why you feed them baby food designed to supply them with vital nutrients. Yet, while many baby foods are safe for children, there are brands that pose certain dangers.
If you fed your baby food that contain toxins, and they developed serious health complications, you could file a lawsuit against the product’s manufacturer. Through a baby food toxins lawsuit, you could recover damages for your child’s medical care and other expenses. Partnering with a lawyer could offer the resources you want to build a strong case.
What Toxins Are in Some Baby Food?
According to a report from the United States House of Representatives, some baby food brands contain dangerous levels of arsenic, lead, cadmium, and mercury. The U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA), along with the World Health Organization (WHO), note that these substances can prove deadly. Toxins can also cause lifelong complications, including cognitive defects.
Here’s what parents need to know about the heavy metals found in certain brands of baby food:
Lead Exposure Can Cause Lifelong Disabilities
Lead can result in behavioral problems, decreased cognitive performance, delayed puberty, and reduced postnatal growth. The FDA also determined that high levels of lead exposure can lead to negative neurological effects and damage the nervous system.
Babies exposed to lead have a higher chance of developing learning disabilities, which can result in decreased future earnings. Additionally, the disabilities that lead causes can lead to expensive medical bills that last a lifetime.
Arsenic Is One of the Most Dangerous
According to the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR), arsenic poses an extreme threat to human health. This toxin can affect one’s:
- Gastrointestinal system
- Respiratory function
- Blood flow
- Brian function
- Immune system’s response
Because babies are small and developing, the effects they suffer on these parts of the body can be severe. Additionally, large amounts of arsenic can seriously impact their cognitive development and central nervous system.
Cadmium Affects Male Fertility
Cadmium is one of the key substances that cause attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Studies have also shown that cadmium is particularly dangerous for boys, affecting their hormone levels.
In addition to ADHD, cadmium exposure can lead to a significant decrease in a baby’s IQ and other behavioral disorders.
Mercury Is Detrimental to Your Child’s Health
Like the other three toxic metals present in baby food, mercury can cause long-term cognitive difficulties in children. Studies on prenatal mercury exposure have proven that mercury exposure can be dangerous to your baby’s overall health.
Baby Foods Containing Toxic Metals
Unfortunately, some of the biggest name brands in the United States have toxic metals in their baby foods. These brands include:
- Hain (Earth’s Best Organic)
Arsenic, lead, and cadmium were reported in all four of these food products, while mercury was only reported in Nurture.
How Contaminated Were the Products?
The FDA has set the maximum levels of arsenic in drinking water at 10 parts per billion (ppb), lead at five ppb, and cadmium at five ppb. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) sets the level of allowable mercury in drinking water at two ppb.
The levels that were seen in baby foods were significantly higher than the maximum levels allowed in drinking water. There were results that showed 91 times the allowable amount of arsenic, 177 times the allowable level of lead, 69 times the allowable level of cadmium, and five times the allowable level of mercury.
Consumer Reports offers a few theories on why these baby food products were contaminated. One of those theories notes that baby food manufacturers only test the ingredients in these products––and not the final batches themselves. Other theories note that baby food manufacturers have much lower standards than those set by federal organizations, enabling them to put unsafe products on the market.
Baby Food Lawsuits Intend to Seek Compensation for Claimants’ Damages
After the U.S. House of Representatives released its findings about the toxins in baby food, parents have filed lawsuits, seeking damages. The courts have disregarded some of these cases, noting that for a parent to file a lawsuit, they must have proof showing that because their child consumed the heavy metals in baby food, they developed health complications.
It’s not easy to seek damages from a billion-dollar food company alone. This is why many litigants have partnered with injury lawyers. An attorney knows what goes into building a successful case and guiding it to a fair resolution. You may consider partnering with an attorney if your child suffered negative health effects from toxic baby food.
Important Things to Know About Filing a Baby Food Toxins Lawsuit
Filing a lawsuit against a baby food manufacturer is a serious decision. Here are some things you should know as you weigh your legal options:
Product Liability Lawsuits Intend to Hold Manufacturers Responsible
Product liability lawyers seek compensation for people harmed by contaminated, faulty, or poorly designed items.
Most product liability cases arise from:
- Design defects
- Manufacturing defects
- Marketing defects
Design defects occur before the final product comes into existence. Manufacturing defects occur when the product is being created. Marketing defects fail to warn consumers of a product’s dangers.
Compensation Intends to Account for Your Injury-Related Losses
If your baby food toxins lawsuit succeeds, you could get financial recovery for:
- The cost of your child’s medical bills, such as hospitalization
- The cost of your lost income while you took time off work to care for your child
- Non-economic damages, such as pain and suffering
- Wrongful death-related expenses, such as funeral costs
Your final court award should reflect the harm that the toxic baby food inflicted on your and your child’s lives. As such, you could recoup other losses than those listed here.
Time Is a Factor in Your Product Liability Lawsuit
Each state has its own deadline for accepting civil lawsuits. You could have anywhere from one year to a few years to file your case, depending on your situation. Retaining prompt legal help could prevent any of these deadlines from expiring. A lawyer can also advise you on your legal options.
A Product Liability Lawyer Could Compel Damages from the Liable Party
You have enough on your plate after learning that your child suffered the negative effects of toxic baby food. You deserve to have an advocate who can manage the claims process and everything it entails. An attorney can assist you by:
To prove liability, your attorney must gather evidence related to your case. They aim to show that because your child ate toxic baby food, they were hurt, and you have damages. Proving liability requires evidence, such as your child’s medical records, the food’s proof-of-purchase statements, and witness testimony.
Determining How Much the Lawsuit Is Worth
Many baby food lawsuits are still unfolding. At this time, there haven’t been any landmark victories against baby food manufacturers, either. So, you may wonder how much you can recover for your injury-related expenses.
Your lawyer should value your losses based on many factors unique to your situation. Their calculations could account for:
- The injuries your child suffered
- Your out-of-pocket expenses
- The effect of your child’s condition on your life
- The medical care your child required
- Whether your child passed away
Your case may account for other specific factors. An attorney can explain more after evaluating your situation.
Filing Your Lawsuit
Your attorney can first determine the liable party in your lawsuit. For instance, they may consider filing an independent lawsuit against the baby food manufacturer. That means your case involves you and the defendant––no one else.
Matters change if your lawyer decides you should join a class action lawsuit or another case with multiple plaintiffs. They can explain your options so you can make informed decisions about moving forward.
Frequently Asked Questions About Baby Food Toxin Lawsuits
As you consider filing a baby food toxin lawsuit, you may have these questions:
How Do I Know if My Baby Is Suffering from Toxic Food Exposure?
Exposure to toxic metals can cause developmental problems, along with other concerns. The National Institute of Health notes that autism is one of the most serious conditions that can arise from toxic metal exposure.
Autism is a lifelong condition that has no cure. It can lead to financial hardship, not just for the child but also for their family. Children with autism may:
- Avoid eye contact
- Have speech delays
- Have delayed cognitive skills
- Demonstrate hyperactivity
- Exhibit signs of anxiety and stress
- Demonstrate restricted or repetitive behaviors or interests
If your child experiences any of these symptoms, you should speak with their doctor to determine if they stem from toxic baby food. The information you glean from your child’s doctor can prove invaluable in your fight for damages.
What Other Foods Can I Feed My Child?
If you are concerned about your child being exposed to heavy metals while consuming baby food, there are alternatives to limit their risk. There are brands that test for toxic heavy metals and ensure their products are safe for consumption.
Some foods that don’t contain high heavy metals include:
- Once Upon a Farm
- Square Baby
- Little Spoon
Additionally, you can make your own baby food or find other ways to enrich your child’s health. You may consider integrating the following foods into their diet:
- Fresh and frozen fruits
- Fresh or frozen green beans, peas, and butternut squash
- Soft and pureed meats
- Infant formula
- Water instead of fruit juice
These manufacturers and foods can create a healthier life for your child and prevent them from unnecessarily being exposed to heavy toxic metals.
How Much Does It Cost to Hire a Product Liability Lawyer?
You may have concerns about partnering with a lawyer, mainly, because you’re concerned about affording one. Many product liability lawyers work on a contingency-fee basis, meaning they don’t request upfront payment for their help. They withdraw payment for their help from the settlement they recover on your behalf.
You don’t pay your lawyer anything if your case doesn’t yield a fair outcome. You can learn more about this arrangement when you consult a law firm for a free case review.
What Should I Do if I Suspect My Baby Ingested Toxic Food?
If you suspect that your baby ingested toxic baby food, you should consult a healthcare professional as soon as possible. They can determine the extent to which your child consumed a toxic substance. Then, they can present a treatment plan that seeks to mitigate the effects of exposure on their life.
Some additional considerations include:
- Keeping the baby food jar in a Ziploc bag or another safe place
- Saving all written communications between you and the involved parties
- Refer settlement offers to your lawyer
- Refuse to give a recorded statement to the other party’s attorneys
- Document any physical conditions in your child (such as skin discoloration)
Even just one of these considerations could mean the difference between a successful case and an unresolved one.
Learn How a Baby Food Contamination Lawyer Can Help You
If your baby has consumed one of the many baby foods that contain heavy metals, then you could file a product liability lawsuit and recover damages. By seeking the assistance of a product liability attorney, you can make the legal process easier for you and your family. A mass torts lawyer can work on your behalf and keep you up to date on any important findings or developments that may influence your lawsuit. They can help you prove liability and determine your compensable losses. When you are ready to seek the assistance of a baby food contamination lawsuit attorney, fill out the contact form on our website.