Plenty of lawsuits were filed against the manufacturers of Xarelto, a blood thinner that caused uncontrollable bleeding. The manufacturers failed to warn consumers against the adverse side-effects of the drug and continued making profits by selling the drug. This might be one of the most prominent cases of injuries caused by defective products, but many other reports of injuries from defective products have been filed over the past years.
Defective products are those that are designed to help consumers, but fail to function properly, causing harm to the consumers. Defective products can range from toys to medical equipment, or medicines to things of everyday use. Under U.S. product liability laws, manufacturers, retailers, distributors, suppliers, and others that make a product available to U.S. consumers can be held liable for injuries and damage caused by these products.
The main hazards associated with defective products include:
- Choking and burn hazards
Spinal cord and neck injuries
- Fatal injuries
In most cases, a defective product causes harm to a large group of people; so defective product lawsuits are generally filed en masse. If you or a loved one has been injured by use of a defective product, look for others who have suffered similar injuries, so that you a file a case together.
Product Liability Laws and Types of Defects
Countless people are injured every year due to defective products. If you purchase a product that fails to perform as advertised (but causes no injuries), you can may be covered by the warranty or get the product replaced or refunded. But, if the product causes injuries or damages, you may be eligible to file a personal injury claim.
Before moving into product liability law, you need to know the types of defect that are eligible for a claim. These include:
- Design Defects: Defects in the designing of a particular product
- Manufacturing Defects: The design was correct but an error was introduced while manufacturing the product
- Failure to Warn: Manufacturers need to provide adequate written warning to make consumers aware of the risks and dangers of using the products
Product liability laws are legal measures that allow victims of defective products to take necessary actions against the manufacturer, distributor, or supplier of the products and get compensated appropriately. The consumer’s cause of action may be based on:
- Negligence: Negligence means that the manufacturer or someone within the manufacturing and supplying chain did not act responsibly to ensure safety of design and manufacturing of the product
- Breach of Warranty: If the manufacturer fails to fulfill the promise or claims concerning the quality or type of product, a breach of warranty is caused
- Strict Liability: Strict liability is a legal rule that considers a seller, distributor, or manufacturer of a defective product to be liable if a person is injured by the product no matter whether they took enough measures to make sure the defect never happened
Hiring a Lawyer for Your Product Liability Claim
If you were injured by a defective product, you may file a product liability claim; the first thing you need to do is determine who (the companies or people) might be liable for the damages. This is important, as you need to name them as defendants. This might be more difficult that you think. Product liability cases are often complicated since a number of people are involved, and such cases often require expert analysis and testimony. Things become even more difficult if a class action claim is filed.
This is why you need to hire a lawyer who has prior experience in filing product liability claims. Moreover, you might already be in pain due to the injuries caused by the defective product; hiring a lawyer is often recommended. A lawyer will ensure that all of the defendants are identified and you get compensated for injuries, medical costs, lost wages, and pain and suffering. Make sure that you seek experienced lawyers to ensure the best outcomes.
Before hiring a lawyer, ask about the pricing, how will he/she proceed with the case, and how will you be involved in the case. Only after you receive satisfactory answers to your questions should you sign a contract.
Defective products can cause minor to catastrophic injuries; therefore, it is necessary that you act immediately after you or a loved one has been injured. It is best to be represented by a lawyer, since you need to determine the basis of your claim and the people involved in the manufacturing and supplying of the defective products. Remember, many influential people might be involved, so you need your case to be strong enough to get compensated.
This means that you need enough proof and evidence to prove fault. Gathering evidence is not easy as you may think – professional help is always recommended. Taking proper actions will not only ensure that you get compensated, but can also ensure that others are not harmed like you.