If you’ve been injured or suffered other damages because of a dangerous product or prescription drug, you might have a viable product liability claim. In evaluating and preparing your case, it’s helpful to get familiar with what the law requires you to prove in order to win.
Unfortunately, defective products can hurt consumers in many meaningful ways. One slip-up can cause companies to recall thousands of products, which often doesn’t happen until after an injury has already occurred. It is the company’s responsibility to ensure customers are safe. When they fail at this duty, the victim is within their rights to pursue a product liability claim. If a defective product has harmed you, here is a guide to the wild world of product liability claims.
What Qualifies as a Defective Product?
First, it is crucial to understand what counts as a defective product in the eyes of the law. A product that does not work is not the same thing in these cases. In the legal context, a defective product means that the product in question does not function as promised and instead causes injury to the consumer.
This definition is valid as long as the consumer was using it in the manner attended. If someone was using the product recklessly, it is unlikely the consumer has a viable liability case. Each state in America has regulations concerning product liability claims designed to stop illegitimate claims, so it is crucial to consider whether you have a strong claim before paying money to pursue legal action.
Will You Need a Lawyer?
There are plenty of times a consumer has reason to pursue a product liability claim. Examples of a strong case would include a knife that slips backward out of its handle and cuts you or a ladder that failed to support someone within its defined weight range who was using it properly.
If a product injured you, first read the instruction manual carefully. Make sure you were adhering to all guidelines and correctly using the product. Then, it might be time to call a personal injury lawyer.
Many personal injury lawsuits come from defective claims cases. A personal injury lawyer will have the specialized knowledge required to fight for you in the courtroom under your state guidelines. If a defective product severely injured you, one of the first things you may want to do is consult a personal injury lawyer.
Three Types of Product Liability Cases
Design defects, manufacturing defects, and failure to warn or label defects are the three types of product liability claims. A design defect means the product is defective because of its inherent design. These include cases where the product could result in harm that the company could have eliminated with a safer product design. Next, a manufacturing defect occurs when a product is harmful because it went against its intended design. This case is when the product was made incorrectly and caused or had the potential to cause damage as a result. Finally, failing to warn claims occur when a product does not provide proper instructions or warnings about the product and risks that would make it unsafe.
Should You Pursue a Case?
If you have been injured due to a defective product, you may be entitled to pursue a product liability lawsuit to recover compensation for your medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering.
Of course, it is up to each individual to decide whether to pursue a product liability claim against a defective product. However, these cases can become long and litigious. Also, state regulations rarely support lighter situations with little material or physical harm. If you have a minor claim, the best bet is probably to move on and save your money. You may need to consult a lawyer, though, to determine the viability of your case. If a product injured you severely, then you should most likely pursue a product liability claim.
It is never good when someone is injured, and it is the company’s legal obligation to make sure that their products will not harm a consumer. If you had an injury from a defective product, it is your right to pursue a product liability claim. Other people may likely have also been harmed or been at the risk of harm. Hopefully, this guide has given you the information needed to take the first steps in your legal journey.