Defective Products Liability Lawyer
Consumers use products every day and expect them to be safe. A defective products liability law firm such as Mausner Graham Injury Law can help you hold a manufacturer or distributor liable if you were injured due to a defective product.
Many companies might unknowingly sell a product with defects, and others could do it intentionally. Whichever it is, liability must be established by proving a design, manufacturing, or marketing defect before you can file a claim.
Preservation of evidence is key at the beginning of products liability cases. A products liability lawyer can help you assess your claim and guide you in the preservation of evidence. Examples of defective products include baby products, electronics, sports equipment, and prescription drugs.
Types of Products Liability Claims
There are three types of products liability claims: design defects, manufacturing defects and marketing defects. To claim that a defendant is strictly liable for a defective product, you must prove the product had a defect that caused an unreasonably dangerous situation.
Design defects cases claim the manufacturer intended the product to turn out the way it did, and the manufacturer’s intended design is unreasonably dangerous. It could, for example, show that the manufacturer did not properly test the product before selling it or they ignored a design defect.
In Florida, the consumer-expectation test is used to determine if something is unreasonably dangerous. This test states that a product is deemed unreasonably dangerous, if it fails to perform as safely as a reasonable consumer would expect when they use it as intended, or when they use it in a reasonably foreseeable manner.
Common examples of design defects are:
- Products for children that contain choking hazards
- Products prone to melting
- Unstable structures such as chairs that collapse
- Mechanical defects on vehicles
- Products like a bicycle helmet that cracks from a small impact.
Manufacturing defects cases claim something went wrong during the manufacturing process. That even though the product was designed to be safe, the actual product leaving the manufacturing facility did not follow the design. If the product then causes an injury when used for its intended purpose, the manufacturer is liable for the injuries.
Products liability claims are liability without fault, and many liability lawsuits fall under the manufacturing defects category. Thus, the manufacturer does not have to act negligently or maliciously for liability to be imposed.
Common examples of manufacturing defects are:
- Incorrectly attached parts
- Improperly manufactured plastic
- Improperly installed electrical circuits
- Incorrect bolts or fasteners.
Marketing defects cases focus on the actions of the manufacturer or supply chain of the product. Products liability claims include allegations the distributor did not include adequate warnings about a product. The plaintiff must show the following:
- There were predictable risks of harm posed by the product.
- The risks could have been reduced or removed by providing reasonable instructions or warnings.
- The failure to include these warnings made the product unreasonably dangerous.
Common examples of marketing defects are:
- Incorrect user instructions
- Improper warning labels
- Failure to warn the consumer of risks.
Who is Responsible for a Defective Product?
There are various parties that might be held responsible for a defective product. It could include the manufacturers and suppliers of the defective parts in the product, the manufacturer of the full product, the suppliers of the product, and the retailers that sold it.
Legal Remedies for Defective Products
Legal remedies differ depending on the circumstances of each case and the product causing the damages, injuries, or losses. The two main legal remedies for defective products are negligence and strict liability.
Negligence. The person suffering the damages (plaintiff) must prove that the individual or company being sued failed to exercise a reasonable level of care to prevent others from being harmed by the product. In the instance of a products liability suit, there are three matters to prove:
- That the seller or manufacturer was negligent in marketing or producing a product.
- That the seller or manufacturer’s negligence caused the injury.
- That actual damages resulted from this negligence.
Legal Remedies for Defective Products – Defective Products Liability Lawyer
Strict liability. In this instance, the person suffering the damages can claim without proving the seller or manufacturer was negligent or careless. The fact that the defective product caused an injury is sufficient.
Proving Fault in a Products Liability Lawsuit
To prove fault in a products liability lawsuit in Florida, you must show that the injury caused by a product was due to the negligence of the defendant. Depending on the facts of the case, the defendant could be the product designer, manufacturer, or seller. Florida is a “strictly liable” state, which requires proof the product had a defect that caused an unreasonably dangerous condition.
Three Elements to Prove in a Products Liability Claim
When you want to lodge a products liability claim, sufficient evidence must be found to prove the following three elements.
Loss. You must show that you suffered a noticeable injury or monetary loss as a result of using the manufacturer’s product.
Failure to warn. You must prove there was (a) a design defect, (b) a manufacturing defect, or (c) the manufacturer knew, or should have known, about the risks the defect presented but failed to warn consumers.
Product used as intended. You must show you used the product as the manufacturer intended it to be used or in a way the manufacturer could expect a reasonable person to use it.
Possible Damages That You Can Claim in a Products Liability Claim
There are two types of damages you can claim in a producst liability claim, compensatory and punitive. Compensatory damages (actual damages) pay the plaintiff for the injury or illness caused by the product. Punitive damages intend to punish a defendant’s contemptible or shocking conduct, to prevent similar conduct by others in the future.
There are two categories of compensatory damages, economic and non-economic. Economic damages refer to property or money lost due to an injury or illness. It could include loss of wages or profits, disability costs, property loss, or medical expenses.
Non-economic damages are compensation for aspects of an injury or illness difficult to quantify, such as emotional or physical suffering. It could include loss of consortium, or pain and suffering. Loss of consortium refers to the negative impact the injury or illness had on your relationship with your spouse.
Benefits of Hiring a Products Liability Lawyer
Navigating the legal system is not only complicated but time-consuming. There are multiple benefits to hiring a products liability lawyer. An experienced injury lawyer knows all the legal restrictions and requirements for lodging a products liability claim. If the case moves forward, they will advise you of your rights and responsibilities and help you navigate through the legal system.
Since a products liability lawyer understands that preservation of evidence is vital at the outset of products liability cases, they can help draft, collect, and present the evidence required to prove your case. An experienced firm such as Mausner Graham Injury Law will aggressively represent your rights as the wrongfully injured.
Injured by a Defective Product? Our Personal Injury Lawyers Can Help
Have you been injured by a defective product and feel you suffered due to the negligence of others? Do you want compensation for damages? The personal injury lawyers from Mausner Graham Injury Law can help. We understand the devastating impact an injury could have and can help to mitigate your losses. There are no legal fees unless we recover for you.
Defective Products Liability Law FAQs
Mausner Graham Injury Law, based in Miami, Florida, is pleased to answer the frequently asked questions you might have about defective products liability law.
Q: What is ‘failure to warn’ in a products liability case?
A: Designers and manufacturers of products have a legal duty to ensure the products they sell are reasonably safe for their intended use. “Failure to warn” is a basis for a products liability claim. Manufacturers are required to adequately instruct consumers on how to use their products correctly.
One of the ways to do this is to place appropriate warning labels on products, as consumers might be unaware of the potential risks involved in using a product. For example, if a childrens toy has small parts that might be a choking hazard, a manufacturer must put a label on the toy warning parents or caregivers of this risk. If they neglect to do so, they failed to warn the consumer and can be a party to a products liability case.
Q: What are the statutes of limitations in a products liability lawsuit in Florida?
A: The statutes of limitations in a products liability lawsuit in Florida depends on the nature of the products liability claim. For personal injury or property damage, lawsuits must be filed within four years. For wrongful death, the statutes of limitations for products liability claims are two years. As the statute of limitations starts on the day of the incident, it is crucial to see a products liability lawyer as soon as possible.
Q: Who can file a products liability lawsuit?
A: TA products liability lawsuit is filed by a defective products liability law firm such as Mausner Graham Injury Law. When you are injured by a defective product, you can call a products liability lawyer, who will consult with you.
Then the lawyer might conduct additional research to determine if you have a claim. If you do have a claim, the attorney will file it on your behalf and try to seek an advantageous settlement.
Most successful products liability claims are settled without going to trial, but you can take your claim to court if you are not satisfied with the compensation offered.
Q: What should I do when injured by a defective product?
A: The first thing to do when you are injured by a defective product is to take care of your medical needs. If you have a claim against the product’s manufacturer, compensation will be requested for your medical bills.
Then you can contact a defective products liability law firm. At Mausner Graham Injury Law, the case evaluation is free. In preparation for the case evaluation, ensure you have the following information available:
Notes on how you got injured and what you did after the accident.
Notes on where and when you purchased the product.
Ensure you still have the product, or as much as possible of it, and the product packaging.
Find your receipt for the product or other evidence of purchase, like a credit card statement.
Gather your medical records and bills.
Q: Who is liable if I am injured by a defective product?
A: When you are injured by a defective product, a defective products liability lawyer will identify who is liable. In Florida, the manufacturer, distributor, wholesaler, or retailer that forms part of the distribution chain can be held liable, depending on the facts of the case.
Q: The product that injured me had a disclaimer. Does that absolve the manufacturer?
A: Most, if not all manufacturers, add a disclaimer to the labeling of a product. But this does not absolve them from liability if the product was used as intended. The designer, manufacturer and distributor are responsible to ensure that when the product is used properly, it will not cause death or injury.
When a product manufacturer receives information that a product defect or failure caused injuries or a death, they are obligated to warn consumers of this and instruct them what to do. Examples of this are car accidents due to seat-belt failures or food contamination.
Q:Why are products liability claims often class actions?
A: Products are generally sold in quantities which multiple people buy. When these consumers buy the same product and are harmed or injured in similar ways by the product, they are all entitled to make the same type of legal claim. For practical purposes, multiple products liability claims are combined into one large class action.
Have you or a loved one been injured due to a defective product? You might have a right to compensation, and Mausner Graham Injury Law PLLC is always ready to help. When you need a defective products liability lawyer, call us for a free consultation.