Proving Lead Poisoning Cases

The heyday of lead poisoning cases may be past, but they still pop up from time to time. Often, lead paint is discovered in older homes when renovations are underway. The effects of lead poisoning are often slow to develop and require difficult proofs.

Make no mistake: lead poisoning cases are time consuming and expensive to handle. Testing for lead in a building is easy to do, but proving that it is the cause of a person's lead poisoning and what the injuries sustained from that poisoning are can be much more difficult. Without the correct data, the right expert(s), and a proper presentation, your case may be a non-starter.

If you have a case of lead poisoning, the first thing you should do is contact an attorney. These cases will simply be too complex to handle alone, and a personal injury attorney will not only be able to help you with the legal process, but also in procuring the necessary evidence
and experts.

After you have identified an attorney, he will likely need to determine the source of your poisoning. While it may be a knee jerk reaction to point to a recent source of poisoning, it is often possible for lead to build up in the body over time and to take a while to present symptoms. As a result, the poisoning may have occurred years before. So, all sources of possible contamination will need to be identified.

Once that is done, you and your attorney will have a good idea of who is responsible for your injury. The most often affected victims of lead poisoning are children. Identifying what injury you and/or your child have suffered, and the extent of those injuries, will be your next task. You will need to review all of the medical records for you and/or your child and provide them to your attorney. Has there been some severe medical problem which also could explain you or your child's condition? Is there evidence of a condition developing before exposure? If so, this may end your case abruptly, as it may become un-winnable.

Ask your expert about these types of issues before you go in for exhaustive (and expensive) medical testing. If, however, it is appropriate, you and/or your child will need to undergo a battery of tests. These will record not only your lead levels, but also the effects they may have had on you or your child's development. One particularly prevalent condition identified in children is the development of Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder (ADHD). In fact, studies show that children (particularly boys) with lead poisoning are four times more likely to develop ADHD.

Having established your damages, your case will be in the hands of your experts. Your attorney will be responsible for finding these people and they should be able to clearly explain what happened to the finder of fact in your case (i.e., the judge or jury). However, as said, this is a very complex task, so you need a well qualified attorney.

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Disclaimer: While every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of this publication, it is not intended to provide legal advice as individual situations will differ and should be discussed with an expert and/or lawyer.

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