Product liability law covers accountability of manufacturers, distributors, wholesalers, and vendors for injuries and damages resulting from defective or dangerous products. The primary objective of “products liability”, as the law is often called, is to protect consumers from goods and products that are dangerous and defective. It also serves to hold manufacturers, retailers, and distributors responsible for knowingly putting such products on the market. The liability of all parties in the supply chain from manufacturer to consumer varies according to the jurisdiction of the case.
Product liability is mostly applied to retail items, but is far reaching. It can even be applied to real estate as in the case of a leaking roof which encourages the growth of mold or mildew, or a poorly installed attic fan which fails to evacuate humid air because of wrong positioning thus causing damage or health issues with you, your pet, or your family or perhaps every living animal/being in the residence.
Depending on local product liability laws, claims can be made under different theories:
Design defects – the product gives rise to liability when it contains a design flaw which makes it dangerous to use for the specific purpose it was intended, or for any other rationally likely purpose.
Manufacturing defects – liability is occasioned by a defect which arises during the manufacturing process.
Marketing defects – liability arises from poor instructions or insufficient warning labels which preclude a user from identifying a product defect. The instructions could also be inadequate in providing information on how to use the product safely.
A Simple Example
What the plaintiff has to prove in a product liability lawsuit also varies according to jurisdiction. Typically, the plaintiff might be required to prove negligence where an injury or damage was caused by a product with a known defect. For instance, if you buy a desk and the manufacturer knew the legs of the desk were not strong enough to hold the weight of only 2 books, let alone several books, a computer, and other items. If you buy that desk and it collapses on you, a pet of yours, or anything else or nothing at all, you have a case to be made. Certainly this does not happen often, but when it does proper action should be taken because this is a household hazard and a case of product neglect by the maker.
Strict liability is an issue where if the plaintiff has proved conclusively that a product is defective, in which case liability is confirmed regardless of the care taken in the other processes from design to marketing.
This is their Sphere of Influence
Since defective product liability varies significantly, a victim who has suffered damage or injury from a defective product should be careful to select only a personal injury attorney who would be skilled in the finer points of product liability law. Our team of attorneys at Taylor King Law are available to help you explore and better understand your options in filing a claim. Contact us today at 1-800-227-9732.