Every day, we rely on countless products to make our lives more convenient and comfortable. However, if any of these products are defective, the consequences can be devastating.
In 2021 alone, 11.7 million people in the United States visited emergency rooms due to product-related injuries.
Fortunately, our legal system has created product liability laws to protect consumers from dangerous products.
Here’s how these laws hold manufacturers, distributors, suppliers, and retailers responsible for any injuries and harm caused by their products.
What is product liability law?
Product liability law is a legal concept that aims to hold all parties accountable for any harm caused by faulty products. This means that everyone involved in the production, distribution, and sale of a defective product can be held liable for any injury or loss caused by their item.
Such cases can arise in various industries such as pharmaceuticals or motor vehicles. In the pharmaceutical industry, drug manufacturers may be responsible for not adequately warning consumers of harmful side effects.
Similarly, in the motor vehicle industry, defective parts like ignition switches or airbags that increase the risk of injury in car crashes can also result in product liability claims.
What are the different types of product liability claims?
To pursue a product liability claim, you must demonstrate that a product was unreasonably dangerous or defective in its design, manufacture, or marketing. In addition, you must show that the defect caused your injuries or losses.
There are several ways in which a product can be found to be defective:
- Manufacturing Defects: A manufacturing defect is a flaw in the product that occurred during its production. It means that the product was not made according to the intended design, and as a result, it can be dangerous or faulty.
- Design Defects: A design defect is a flaw in the product’s design that makes it inherently unsafe, regardless of how well it was manufactured. This means that even products that are made correctly may pose a risk of harm to consumers because of a fundamental flaw in the design.
- Deceptive Marketing: This type of claim arises when the product is not accompanied by proper labeling, instructions, or warnings about its use, which could lead to injury or harm. In such cases, the manufacturer or seller has a duty to provide clear and adequate warnings about any risks associated with their product and how to use it safely.
Ultimately, victims of defective products can pursue a personal injury claim — even if the manufacturer didn’t intend to cause harm. If you have been injured by a defective product, you may be able to recover the full value of your case.
What are the consequences of product defects?
Product liability cases can have serious implications for both manufacturers and consumers.
Recent examples include General Motors recalling over 2 million vehicles due to faulty ignition switches that resulted in deaths and injuries, and Johnson & Johnson’s talcum powder-based feminine hygiene products being linked to ovarian cancer. These cases highlight the significance of accountability and consumer protection in product manufacturing.
If a consumer is injured by a defective product, they may be entitled to compensation for their losses. The full value of a product liability case can come in the form of economic and non-economic damages.
Economic damages cover financial losses such as medical bills and missed work days, while non-economic damages may include pain and suffering and emotional distress. In cases where a defective product results in death, surviving family members of the deceased may be eligible to file a wrongful death claim.
Why should you contact an attorney for your product liability claim?
Companies and manufacturers have a legal obligation to produce safe and reliable products for consumers. When they fail to do so, they can be held accountable for any harm caused by their products.
Seeking legal guidance from an experienced personal injury attorney is crucial to ensure that you and other consumers are protected. An attorney can guide you through the legal process and help gather evidence to demonstrate that a product was defective and caused harm.
Don’t hesitate to take action if you or a loved one has been affected by a defective product – contact a qualified attorney today.