After bracing yourself with long lines, you finally got your holiday shopping out of the way. Now that you are done finding the gifts and wrapping them, you can relax – or so you think.
For whoever is tearing through their presents, the last thing you want or need is for them to hurt in themselves because the product that was purchased is unsafe. Unfortunately, some bad products that are given as gifts may be precarious to those who purchase them due to hazardous materials, dangerous design, malfunctioning parts, or other reasons.
Manufacturers tend to speed up their manufacturing process in order to develop just enough products to satisfy the holiday shopping craze. In many instances, they end up not only compromising the quality of products produced, but also neglecting to look after manufactured goods for potential hazards or defects.
The area of law that deals with unpredictable products that are sold and put into the stream of commerce is called product liability. Products should always be safe for consumers when they are in proper usage. Product liability is a breach of trust that could require legal action. If this is the case, you can always turn to the Law Offices of Wolf & Pravato for a product liability claim and injury lawyer. There are consumer dangerous product rights and laws. When determining whether you have a legitimate defective product liability claim along with prepping your case, it is in your best interest to make yourself familiar with what the certain product safety law requires you to demonstrate in order to win your product liability case.
Although the specifics of what you have to prove vary within each and every state, for the most part, products liability law demands that you prove all of the following things (these are referred to as the “elements” in your claim) to win:
- You were injured or endured losses.
- The product is defective.
- The defect was the cause of your injury.
- You were utilizing the product as intended.
Safety should always be your top priority, so it is advised to seek medical attention as soon as the case of an injury occurs. Make sure to keep records of every emergency room and doctor’s visit, and request physical copies of your visit summaries, your patient chart, and the results of any diagnostic tests such x-rays or MRI reports before you leave.
If you do not have a monetary loss or you are not injured, you would be lacking an essential element of a products liability claim. Let’s face it – the proof is in the pudding, and without actual injury or damage, you have no claim. The moment you are out of immediate danger and all product parts and information are put away, write down the nature of your injury. Write a detailed account of the events leading up to the injury and of the occurrence itself. You can use this accident report template.
If anyone so happened to be present when you got hurt, remember to ask them for a written account, too. Let them know you might need them as your witness.
Electronically time and date stamp it by emailing everything you documented to someone you trust. All will become part of the body of evidence necessary should you choose to go after a product liability lawsuit.
The states that must also find a way to prove that the bad product that injured you is defective. How easy this is to prove has to do with the kind of bad product injury claim you make.
If you are claiming that the product was faulty due to an error in making it, proving that it is defective or the product is dangerous may be relatively easy. If you claim that the product was manufactured properly, but the design of the product is faulty, your evidence may be harder to come by. Most likely, you’ll have to demonstrate that the danger enacted by its design was uncalled for.
Bad Product Lawsuit / Bad Product Claim Examples
- Recall Due to children choking hazard
- Johnson and Johnson Baby Powder Lawsuit
- Baby Jogging Stroller Lawsuit
Even if a product is dangerous in some way it does not always mean the manufacturer or supplier is liable for injuries.
Establishing whether a design is unreasonably dangerous can be simple or tricky. Sometimes there is no fair or cost-effective method to design a much-needed product without it being somewhat dangerous. According to Nolo, the legal encyclopedia, “Air bags in automobiles can cause serious injuries, but their relatively low cost and effectiveness at saving lives in certain types of collisions provide car manufacturers with the grounds to argue that they are not unreasonably dangerous, particularly in view of the alternatives.” There are regulations for how products are made, packaging and product materials.
If you can somehow show that the dangerous product quality is not apparent to a regular consumer, your chances are higher in proving the defectiveness of the injury-inducing product’s design. In certain cases, liability may depend on whether the warnings and instructions provided by the manufacturer or supplier were adequate.
Your argument is not sufficient if you claim that you were injured while using the defective product. You must specifically exhibit that your injury was caused by the defect itself.
In some situations, linking the defect in the product to your injury is fairly straightforward. In other situations, it may require more effort to explain. For example, if you were injured in a car wreck while driving a car that is bound to flip over when turning corners, and there is evidence that you were speeding when the accident happened, the car manufacturer will argue that your reckless driving, not the car’s design, was what caused your accident.
You must have been using the product in a way that the manufacturer intended consumers to use it. This does not necessarily mean that the way you were using the product at the time of your injury must defer to the manufacturer’s specifications. If a manufacturer can expect the average consumer to utilize the product in the same way you did, it is likely that you met this requirement.
When it comes to holiday toys, keep toys with tiny parts that can come apart and be swallowed away from small children. Avoid toys with magnetic parts. Hospitals have witnessed a pattern of children and adolescents swallowing high-powered magnets that lead to serious illness and enter intestine and stomach linings. Wheeled gifts such as bicycles, skateboards and scooters put too many kids in hospitals with sprains and broken or fractured bones. Insist that they use all appropriate safety gear before taking their new presents for a spin. There are alot of consumer product regulations for electronics for both adults and children.
As for packaging, plastic bags in particular presents a suffocation risk, and those silicon packs that are made to take in moisture in product boxes can be harmful if one were to swallow them.
Hire Product Liability Attorney
Assuring that your defective product claim includes every element required in your state may be a handful. Reliant on your specific product liability case, you are going to need to consult with a lawyer who specializes in products liability.
If you find yourself having a product liability claim this holiday season, do not hesitate to contact us. We encourage you to call 954-633-8270 for a free consultation today!