For most of us, we cannot get through the day without the convenience of consumer products. Whether it is a motor vehicle, household item, tool or any other type of consumer good, these items are used to make things easier. Unfortunately, consumer products can fail or be defective. And because of these defects, the consumer could suffer much harm.
A defective product could suddenly injure an unsuspecting consumer. This incident is not only shocking because it was unexpected, but it is impactful due to the injures and damages suffered by the victim. At Easton & Easton, LLP, our attorneys understand how defective goods can significantly impact the lives of those harmed by them. Thus, we are dedicated to helping individuals in the Orange County area take action after a defective product has injured them.
A product can be defective for a variety of reasons; however, it is typically due to one of three reasons, which include design, manufacturing and warning defects. If a product or a component part was not designed properly, this can lead to a malfunction. If a product was not manufactured properly, this could lead to a defective product. And if a product does not have a proper warning label, this could cause the product to be dangerous, and thus, defective.
Our law firm will take the time to explore the cause of an accident caused by defective product. This helps place liability on a party for the damages and losses suffered. Whether it is a designer, manufacturer, retailer or a combination of any of them, our attorneys are dedicated to helping our clients prove fault and liability so they can recover the compensation they are owed.
To learn more, check out our law firm’s product liability website. Dealing with the aftermath of a defective product incident can be overwhelming. This is where our law firm can step in to help and guide you through the process.
Products liability cases flow from many different circumstances
New products constantly make their way into the marketplace, where consumers ultimately determine their success by either buying the new products or leaving them on the shelf. Many products that Orange County residents buy are commercially successful because they make life easier or solve some kind of common problem. A refrigerator, for example, keeps food cold and prevents spoilage. On the other hand, some products merely satisfy consumer desire.
Regardless of whether a product helps to take care of a person’s wants or their needs, no product should be on the market unless it is safe for use. This is just as true for complex products like motor vehicles or medical equipment as it is for simpler products, like plastic children’s toys or household cleaning solutions.
While product safety should always be the top priority for manufacturers, distributors and retailers, sometimes dangerous products do make their way into the hands of consumers. This can happen because a negligent manufacturer assembled the product improperly, or with unsafe materials. Likewise, products can also be a danger to consumers as a result of poor product design or insufficient warnings about certain known dangers of the product.
At Easton & Easton, our attorneys have six decades worth of experience in dealing with the aftermath of products that harm consumers. From rollover SUV accidents to toxic chemicals in household products, we understand how to collect and present evidence to help prove that a person’s injuries resulted from a dangerous product.
Our firm’s website contains more information on products liability causes of action. The website, in addition to a consultation with our staff, can be a helpful resource in moving forward with a case involving a dangerous product. We may be able to help prove other parties’ liability following a fatal product liability case or one that results in non-fatal injuries.
Products liability: how does a product recall work?
Many people are probably loosely aware of what a product recall is just by watching the news. With regard to the details of how a recall works, people may have a bit of a fuzzier picture in their minds.
This is not surprising since there is no one absolutely uniform way to conduct a recall. This is because several administrative agencies have the authority to keep unsafe products off of the country’s shelves, and each agency has slightly different recall procedures.
Still, there are some basic principles as to how recalls work. Generally speaking, the agency with jurisdiction receives a report of an unsafe product being on the market. In many if not most cases, the manufacturer of the product reports the safety issue, and the company and the agency work together to get the product off of the shelves or take other appropriate action.
In other cases, after investigating the reports, the agency might approach the manufacturer and ask it to pull the product for repairs, replacement, or a refund. The manufacturer at this point has the option of agreeing to do so, in which case the recall is dubbed “voluntary” since the agency did not have to get a court order to pull the product.
Although rare, sometimes manufacturers will contest the agency’s decision to recall a product and claim the product is sufficiently safe. These sorts of matter get resolved in court, as the agency will generally try to get an order requiring the manufacturer to remove the product.
One thing that people must remember, though, is that recalls can only get a person a replacement product, a free repair or a refund. Even if the person was severely injured by the product, they cannot get additional compensation through a recall but instead can pursue a products liability lawsuit.
The strict liability standard in product defect cases
Generally speaking, when someone gets hurt in a car wreck or another type of accident, the question he or she needs to ask is whether another person was negligent and thereby caused the accident. In other words, before getting compensation, an injured person is going to have to prove that, in some way, the responsible party fell short of its obligations to keep the victim safe.
This is not the case in products liability cases, which is the type of lawsuit an injured person would file were he or she to get hurt by a product that was designed in an unsafe manner or just had a defect or problem from the manufacturing process.
For this reason, manufacturers of products and those who sell consumer products on the commercial market can be held strictly liable for the defects in the product if those products wind up hurting or killing a consumer. This means that a victim or the victim’s family need not have to prove that the seller or manufacturer was careless or even foresaw the problem with their product; if the product is “unreasonably dangerous,” then the manufacturer or seller will pay for any injuries that product causes.
Strict liability does not, however, mean that a victim can just walk into a courtroom and demand compensation. There are still a lot of things a victim will have to prove, and manufacturers could still try to avoid responsibility. This is one reason victims of defective or dangerous products should consider seeking out the advice of an attorney with experience in these matters.