A product liability case arises when the manufacturer, supplier, distributor or even retailer who makes a product available to the general public is held liable for an injury cause by the product they have supplied.
Most products we purchase today come with some type of warning. Unfortunately, all the hazards the product could cause may not be known. Or the manufacturer may know of the hazard and decide the “fix” would cost more than the liability costs.
The Ford Pinto is a perfect example. The Pinto was found to have a defective fuel system design which led to explosions causing severe burns and deaths to drivers and car occupants. Ford did a risk/benefit analysis and although they had access to a new design that would have cost an additional $11 per car, they chose to not spend the $137 million for the fix since their analysis showed paying out claims for injury and death would only cost $49.5 million.
There are many product liability cases similar to Ford. It’s an area of law where lawyers have made a huge difference in changing the way companies now do business.
Types of Product Liability cases
There are three types of product liability cases: manufacturing defects, design defects and failure to warn. These types of cases tend to be quite complex and require an experienced attorney who is willing to go up against large corporations. Our lawyers are tenacious fighters.
Obviously this type of claim occurs when the injury-causing product was manufactured. In some cases a defect can be caused by a careless worker or low-quality materials. Manufacturing defects could be caused by using the wrong screw, bolt or fastener on mechanical parts or attaching parts incorrectly.
A product can be designed exactly to a manufacturers specifications. But, if in the design process, those specifications are wrong or dangerous to the use of the product, and cause injury, that would constitute a design defect product liability case.
Failure to Provide Adequate Warnings or Instruction
A product manufacturer is required to provide adequate warning or instruction on a product that could be dangerous to the user. A corrosive paint stripper without a warning label or a household product that doesn’t warn against possible fumes that could cause damage to the users respiratory system – both could cause real injury to the user and would, therefore, constitute a claim.
Product liability cases tend to be quite complex and require an experienced attorney. At Shay & Associates we believe in holding manufacturers liable for putting unsafe products on the market. If you’ve been injured due to any of the above types of product liability claim, call us today.