At Christopher Jackson Law, we recognize that dangerous and defective products are one of the most common reasons of thousands of deaths throughout the U.S. To make sure no one gets away with such cases, product liability laws are enacted in each state to hold the party at fault responsible for the injuries their defective and dangerous products have caused to the users. Product liability law is very different from the ordinary personal injury laws. Let us discuss about the product liability law in detail.
What is Product Liability Law?
Product liability, as the name refers, is when a product seller or the product manufacturer is held liable for the putting a dangerous or defective product in the supply chain that causes a harm to the consumer. The responsibility of the defective product lies with all the sellers of this product throughout the entire distribution chain. The law requires all products to meet a certain safety standard for the consumers. If it doesn't meet these standards, the manufacturer and the seller of these products can be held liable under the law.
While there are no federal level laws when it comes to product liability claims, each state has their own laws for it. The state product liability laws come under strict liability, negligence and also breach of warranty.
Types of Product Defects
The plaintiff in the product liability claim needs to prove that the product that was the reason for the injury was dangerous or defective. The defectiveness of the product was the reason the product became unreasonably dangerous. There are three main kinds of product defects that can give rise to either supplier or manufacturer liability.
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.
Examples of Defective Products
To help you better understand the concept of defective products, here are some examples:
· Suffocation from child seats, cribs or toys
· Defective space heaters leading to burns and explosion
· Amputation and laceration injuries resulting from a faulty machinery
· Seat belt failure in car collision leading to spinal cord injury
· Defective air bags leading to traumatic eye and head injuries
Some cases of defective products go back to the design of the product. Here are some common examples of it.
· A flaw in the design of the machinery that should have a safety shielding
· An explosion or leak resulting from a faulty valve
· Rollovers or gas tank explosion due to a faulty car design
· A defective drug
· Improperly labeled food product leading to an acute allergic reaction
Who Can be Held Liable?
Product liability claim can only arise if the product has been sold at some point through the marketplace. Earlier, a contractual relationship had to exist between the supplier of the product and the person injured by it to be able to recover the damages. This was also known as "privity of contract". This contract does no longer exist in most of the states today. It is no longer the requirement that the person injured has to be a purchaser of the product to recover the damages. Any person who could have been injured if they had used the product can file a lawsuit against the manufacturer or the supplier if the product was sold to anyone at any point of time.
The following parties can be held liable under the product liability claim:
· Manufacturer of the product
· Assembler or the installer of product
· Manufacturer of the parts of the product
· Wholesaler of the product
· Retailer selling the product to the final consumer
Who is Responsible?
In some product liability cases, the doctrine of "res ipsa loquitur", Latin for "the thing speaks for itself" shifts the burden of proof on to the defendants. It indicates that the defect was a result of negligence on the part of some party. If the doctrine is invoked successfully, there is no need for the plaintiff to prove the negligence of the defendant, rather, it will be up to the defendant to prove that they were not negligent.
Strict liability is another rule that is of help to the plaintiff in the product liability cases. There is no need for the plaintiff to prove that the manufacturer was negligent, if the case of strict liability is applicable. They just need to prove that the product was defective. This allows the plaintiffs to recover the damages they otherwise wouldn't have been able to recover otherwise.
If you or a loved one has been injured by using a dangerous or defective product, they can claim to recover the damages under the product liability law. We, at Christopher Jackson Law, help the people injured in product liability cases by assisting them in getting the financial compensation as they deserve. This includes compensation for financial, as well as, physical recovery. The Consumer Products Safety Commission (CPSC) is responsible for ensuring the safety of the products we commonly use at our homes, schools, workplaces or any other place.
We Can Help
If you are located in Kentucky and are looking for an experienced personal injury attorney to help you with your product liability case, we are here to help. The defective product injury attorneys at Christopher Jackson Law have been working in the field for nearly two decades and know how these cases need to be handled. We will help you recover the right compensation for the damages inflicted upon you because of a defective product. Call us now at 859-261-1111 for free consultation.