If you are using a product the right way but it still causes an injury to you, you can file the responsible party for a defective product injury claim. It can be any tangible product and an injury of any kind. A faulty product includes a defect in the manufacturing or design or not putting up adequate alert or warning regarding how the product should be used. In many cases, where the manufacture gets to know about the defective product, the product is recalled by the manufacturer.
Does recalling the defective product by the manufacturer changes the rules that govern a defective product liability case?
They certainly do. Here is all you need to know about it.
Product Recall - What is it?
In simple words, product recall is calling the product off the market and back to the manufacturer. It involves a manufacturer of a product who makes the decision of recalling the product and withdrawing it from the market after knowing that there is a safety issue or defect in it. This can be done as a result of the investigation carried out by the government after complaints of the consumers. Manufacturers often recall the product voluntarily as well. The recalled products are either replaced with defect-free ones or the consumers are given compensation in case the products cannot be replaced.
How Does it Work?
If the manufacturer becomes aware of a defect or potential hazard with one of their products, they generally recall these products voluntarily. These defects may be noticed by the manufacturers themselves or after they are brought to the attention of the manufacturers by the Consumer Product Safety Commission or the Federal Food and Drug Administration.
There are three basic forms of product defects that can lead to their recall.
Manufacturing Defects: These are the defects that occur during the production or assembly of the product.
Design Defects: The defect lies in the design of the product and it is inherently unsafe because of it.
Marketing Defects: The marketing of the product was not done right. This includes incorrect labels, incomplete or no safety warnings or improper instruction on how to use it.
If a voluntary recall is not done by the manufacturer themselves, the CPSC or the FDA may issue a recall of the products themselves by sending out a notice to the distributors and seller of the product. They will also notify the people who have already bought the product despite it being in a defective state so that any injuries can be avoided. The nature of the defect and the possible risks it poses to the consumers is clearly mentioned in the recall. In addition, the information about how to the product can be repaired or replaced is also made known. These recall notices are usually posted in the trade journals. They can also be found out in an online recall database by searching the product by its name.
How Does a Recall Affect Product Injury Claim?
The manufacturer does not become automatically liable for the injuries to the consumers if they have recalled the product. In fact, you as the injured party will have to prove your case in court just like in any other personal injury case. What's different in this case when the defective product has been recalled is that there is no need for you to prove the negligence of the manufacturer, as you would have done in any other kind of personal injury case.
While you can use the recall of the defective product as a circumstantial evidence in your product liability claim, you will still need to present direct evidence of it before the court. This can include the interviews of the eye witnesses, photographs of the defective product and the testimony of a key witness. There are some courts that do not allow considering recall as an evidence in a product liability case. The jurors in this case are not aware of the recall and may direct you to proceed with the case as if there was no recall of the product.
Does Product Recall Guarantee that You Will Win the Case?
Definitely not. It does not guarantee anything. Neither is it a waiver under which the manufacturer might get some protection, nor does it mean that you will win the case. Just because the manufacturer informed the public at large about the defect in their product by making a recall does not mean they are not going to be held responsible for the defects or will not have to face the court for the injuries the product has already caused to the consumers. The defendant needs to prove that the plaintiff was aware of the recall before they made use of the defective product to avoid liability after the recall.
Experienced Defective Product Liability Lawyers in Kentucky
If you or a loved one has been injured due to the use of a defective product, you have the right to file a lawsuit against the manufacturer. This can be done regardless of whether the recall has been made or not. A recall does not spare the manufacturing company of the consequences of releasing a defective and dangerous product in the market to the general public.
To find out more about the defective product liability laws in Kentucky and to get help with your personal injury case, get in touch with us at your earliest. We offer free consultation at: 859-261-1111. Our personal injury lawyers have years of experience handling product liability and recall cases and will help you defend your rights as the customer in the court.