Tucker Product Liability Attorneys
There are thousands of people who suffer injury every year caused by unsafe and defective products. The area of law that defines the legal standards and rules for imposing liability for defective products is “product liability law.” This area of law sometimes eases the legal burden of establishing fault in cases involving unsafe or poorly made products. When a person is injured by a malfunctioning air bag in a motor vehicle, child’s toy with a choking hazard or other unsafe or dangerous product, the accident victim may have a right to seek damages against anyone in the manufacturing-distribution network, including the manufacturer of individual components, the manufacturer of the consumer product, the wholesaler and the retailer.
Poorly designed or shoddily manufactured products can cause permanent and debilitating injuries and wrongful death. At Montlick and Associates, our dedicated Tucker product liability attorneys understand the extensive resources needed to take on the makers of defective motor vehicles, drugs with harmful side effects, laptop batteries that pose fire hazards and other hazardous products. Product liability cases frequently involve industry experts, extensive testing, investigation of manufacturing processes and other extensive resources. Our Tucker product liability lawyers have been representing consumers who fall victim to dangerous and defective products since our law firm was founded in 1984.
Consumer products are expected to meet the ordinary expectations of customers. When a product malfunctions or fails to perform as anticipated because of a defect or hazard, product liability law typically gives consumers a right to seek financial compensation for resulting injuries. Product liability law is based in state law involving claims rooted in the legal theories of strict liability, negligence and breach of warranty.
Common types of product defects
The process of proving a product liability claim involves establishing that the product poses an unreasonable danger to consumers. The types of product defects that may be the basis of a product liability claim include design defects, manufacturing defects and marketing defects.
Design Defects: Design defects are innate to the product even when the manufacturing process goes perfectly. These defects occur even when the product conforms precisely to its specifications. While an injured consumer may need to establish negligence, sometimes strict liability may apply if it can be shown that a cost-effective alternative design was available. If the nature of the product is so unreasonably dangerous that it could not be safely used by consumers, this may mitigate the need to establish that there was a reasonably safe alternative design.
Manufacturing Defects: Manufacturing defects are caused by problems in the actual process of assembling or manufacturing the product. These defects represent a deviation from the product specifications of the designer or manufacturer. These cases can be easier to prove because the manufacturer specifications provide evidence that the particular unit that caused the injury did not conform to its design.
Because it can be extremely difficult to establish what went wrong in the manufacturing process that led to the defect, product liability law provides two separate legal doctrines that may be employed to establish fault. The first concept is strict liability. Strict liability relieves the obligation of proving negligence so that the plaintiff only needs to prove that the product was defective when it left the possession of the defendant.
The other legal theory that may be used when it is unclear how a manufacturing defect arose is “res ipsa loquitur.” This Latin phrase literally translates as “the thing speaks for itself.” The legal principle involves shifting the burden of proof to the defendant because in the absence of negligence the defect would not typically exist. If the doctrine can be successfully invoked, it shifts the burden so that the defendants must prove that they were not negligent.
Marketing Defects: Improper labeling, insufficient warnings regarding hazards and faulty instructions all may constitute a form of marketing defect. If the product manufacturer makes a misrepresentation about the product, this also may constitute a marketing defect.
Defenses to liability claims based on product liability law
Many times companies that produce unreasonably dangerous or defective products will defend against product liability claims by arguing that the defendant has not been adequately identified as the manufacturer or distributor of the product. One potential exception to the requirement that you establish the supplier of the product is the “market share” liability theory, which is common to defective pharmaceutical cases. Under this legal theory, a drug company may be held liable according to its percentage of the market for that drug in the particular locality.
Companies that produce defective products also defend these claims based on the modification or misuse of the product. When a product is altered or modified after it has left the control of the defendant, this may provide a defense. Alternatively, the business also may attempt to defend against a product liability claim based on misuse of the product if the misuse was not reasonably foreseeable. Manufacturers of products are expected to anticipate foreseeable misuses of a product.
When you suffer injuries caused by a defective product like traumatic brain injuries, damage to the spinal cord, compound fractures, loss of limbs and other serious injuries, our experienced Tucker personal injury attorneys have a proven track record taking on large corporations that place consumers at danger with their unsafe products.
Be aware of your legal rights! If you or a family member has been injured or a loved one has died, our dedicated Tucker product liability lawyers are committed to helping clients financially recover so that they can focus on their physical recovery. Call now for your FREE CONSULTATION with Montlick and Associates experienced Tucker product liability lawyers. Our attorneys are available to help you and may even visit you if needed. You can call us anytime 24x7 at 1-800-LAW-NEED (1-800-529-6333) for your FREE CONSULTATION. Alternatively, you can visit our website, www.montlick.com, to make use of our FREE CASE EVALUATION FORM or 24-hour live online chat service.