If you have been injured by a defective product, you may feel like you’re fighting an uphill battle. Below, Personal Injury Lawyer Benjamin Shell has outlined the three types of product liability cases you may encounter as well as how to overcome the common challenges associated with these cases.
Product liability is a strict liability type of case that breaks down into three subcomponents:
A design defect is something that is wrong with the design of the product itself. The design of a defected product is inherently dangerous. You may recall the Ford Pinto cases that occurred a few years back where they put the gas tank in the back of the car. During rear-end collisions, the car would go up in flames. That was a design defect.
The next issue in product liability cases is manufacturing defects. This doesn’t mean the product is inherently dangerous. Instead, something is wrong with the way the product was made, whether it is a loose screw or an improperly-placed weld. A mistake in the manufacturing process could make a product inherently dangerous when you use it.
The third category of product liability is a warning defect or a marketing defect. You may recall the McDonalds hot coffee case. That was a warning case, meaning the company did not provide proper warning to the consumer that the coffee was dangerous and could cause significant burns, which it did in that case.
A common product for warning defects cases is medications that don’t indicate what type of symptoms you may experience. If you are prescribed a medication that unexpectedly causes drowsiness, and you drive a vehicle, you could end up getting in an accident. The company could be liable in that product liability case.
Normally, the biggest challenge you’re going to face in a product liability case is the money on the other side. For the most part, these cases are against bigger corporations, and they don’t want to admit that their product is defective. It’s not something where they automatically say, “You’re right. We were wrong.” They want to fight it out, and it’s a tough fight. That’s why you need a product liability attorney to help you with it.
Number one thing you should do in any personal injury case, especially product liability cases, is to make sure you get the medical treatment you need immediately. The second thing I would recommend is to preserve the product, whether it is a medication, a blender, a wheelchair, or any other type of product that has a defect and caused injury. Whatever’s wrong, the goal is to make sure you keep it in the condition that it was in at the time of the injury.
Many times, the corporation will come back to you and ask for the product. They’ll try and buy it back from you. You need to make sure you don’t do that because once the product’s gone, it’s gone. You need to preserve as evidence so your attorney can have that product tested later on to show why it was a defective product. And third–and probably most important–is to make sure you meet with an experienced personal injury attorney that has some experience litigating product liability cases.
You will need someone to help make sure the defective product is preserved. It’s going to have to have a chain of custody to make sure that it hasn’t been changed in any way shape or manner.
You’re also going to want to hire an expert, or group of experts to help test the product to find out why it did what it did, why it’s defective, why it caused the injury that it did. These corporations don’t go down without a fight. It’s not an easy process and typically, it’s a David vs. Goliath situation.
We’re here to fight for the little guys and to make sure you get the compensation you deserve. Call us today at 850-444-4878 for a free case evaluation with our product liability lawyers in Pensacola.