November 22, 2020 | Product Liability
Every year millions of Americans, both young and old, are injured by toys, tools, and other products commonly found in homes and offices around the country. Sometimes these injuries are the result of user error. However, in many cases, an individual is injured through no fault of their own, but rather because of some defect in the product they are using.
In such situations, the injured party might have a product liability claim. Generally, there are three types of product liability claims individuals can bring against a company if they are injured by a defective product.
- Defective design: These are products that have a flaw in their design that increases the risk of injury or death.
- Manufacturing defect: These are products that are well designed but have a flaw due to the manufacturing process.
- Failure to adequately warn: Products in which the company fails to sufficiently warn consumers about the risk of the product.
Each of these three categories of product liability claims has several unique aspects that are worth looking at in more detail. Hopefully, by doing so, you will get a better idea of whether or not you might have a product liability claim you could bring against a company.
With defectively designed products, there is something inherently wrong with the product at the most fundamental level. This flaw puts consumers at risk and can lead to injuries and even death. It is not uncommon for many products to be recalled due to design flaws.
This often happens with car parts. Every year, the news media reports the latest car or car part that is recalled because it is defectively designed. But this type of product liability claim is hardly reserved for the automotive industry.
Other products that have commonly been recalled due to a defective design include:
- Construction equipment
- Pesticides, including Roundup Weedkiller
- Medical devices
The truth is that just about any product can have a defective design. If that is the case for something you have purchased and subsequently been injured by, you might have a product liability claim that would fall under the defective design category.
When a product has a manufacturing defect it means that, while the product isn’t inherently dangerous, something occurred in the manufacturing process to make the particular unit you purchased defective and dangerous. Companies are supposed to have quality assurance measures in place and a failure to catch a product that doesn’t meet those standards could mean the company is at fault for the injuries caused.
Just as there are products that are more prone to being defectively designed, there are certain products that are more likely to be defective due to a problem in the manufacturing process. Some of these products include:
- Medicines that are tainted with harmful chemicals
- A home appliance that is missing a crucial component
- Vehicles in which crucial parts are installed incorrectly
Any product that is mass-produced could have individual units that are defective due to a problem in the manufacturing process. If a company still sells that product and you are injured, you could have a product liability claim against them.
Failure to Adequately Warn
The use of some products comes with necessary risks. However, if a company fails to adequately warn consumers of those risks, or fails to include sufficient instructions for how to use the product, individuals using the product could suffer an injury.
This can happen with medications in which the drug in question should not be taken with another type of drug. It can also happen if a medical device does not come with adequate instructions for how to use it properly.
Of course, there are many other types of products that can come without sufficient warning. If you have been injured by a product because the product failed to warn or provide adequate instructions, you could have a product liability case that falls into the failure to warn category.
Hiring a Product Liability Lawyer
While you are not required to hire a lawyer to bring a product liability claim against a company, there are advantages to doing so. First of all, a lawyer who specializes in product liability claims will know which of the three categories your case falls into and how best to proceed with that type of claim.
A skilled product liability lawyer will also make sure all deadlines are met in your case and calculate the damages you are due appropriately. If you are looking to maximize your recovery, hiring a quality product liability lawyer is the best way to ensure you receive the compensation you are due.