Companies that manufacture or sell products have a duty to make sure that those products are safe for their intended use. When a person is seriously injured or killed by a defective product, the manufacturer or distributor of that product may be liable for that person’s injury or death. Product injury or liability claims cover a multitude of products from baby cribs to strollers to automobiles and medications. While every case is unique, the exact compensation available to you is determined by the circumstances of your claim. Our experienced Tallahassee attorneys will discuss the possibility to pursue compensation for:
- Medical bills (past and future)
- Lost wages / diminished earning capacity
- Pain/ suffering/ emotional anguish
- Funeral expenses (as seen in wrongful death cases)
Manufacturing Defects: This is due to error during assembly. A manufacturer is liable for any defects that occur as a result of faulty construction. There is a small percentage of goods that will typically have a defect. You may have a case if you can prove that the defect had caused the injury. Contact one of our Tallahassee product injury attorneys for a free consultation to discuss if you have a case.
Design defect: This is a flaw in the original blueprint of a product. Could the manufacturer have used a superior design that would not alter the purpose of the product? This defect is continuous throughout all of the manufactured products.
Failure to Warn: A product liability lawsuit may be pursued if the manufacturer fails to warn the user of potential risks. A party may be held liable if warnings or instructions could have prevented injury if followed while using a product. Warning labels should inform the consumer of existing hazards, severity of the risk involved with use of a product, effects of the hazard, and how to avoid the hazard when properly used.
Product liability law is an area that covers a number of different claims. Our defective product lawyers at Brooks, LeBoeuf, Bennett, Foster & Gwartney, P.A. have experience in handling cases dealing with:
- Defective vehicles
- Defective guardrails
- Defective medical devices
- Dangerous drugs
- Defective children’s products
- Food poisoning and product liability
- Other defective items
Common types of Product Liability Cases:
Negligence: Many times there is carelessness in the product design or manufacturing of the product. Some facets of product development in which negligence can occur include hastily reviewing product plans, failure to inspect or test the product sufficiently, releasing the product too early, or failure for machines which fabricate the components of the product to be properly maintained.
Strict Liability: The injured party may have a case if s/he can prove that a defect in a product exists and resulted in an injury. If a defect exists, the manufacturer can be strictly liable for any resulting damages. Products purchased second hand may not apply as the product must have been purchased in the chain of distribution.
Breach of Warranty: This warranty covers any person who would use the product. When something is sold, the buyer relies on two warranties. The express warranty is any representation about the product and its safety made by the manufacturer or retailer. The implied warranty is a promise by the manufacturer (or other liable party) that the product will not cause harm if it is used as intended.
Who can be held liable for a defective product injury? It is important to know that while determining who is held liable with a defective product, there are more than one liable parties involved. All or any of the following parties can be held liable for damages that result in an injury due to a defective product:
Manufacturer: A liable manufacturer can include a large multi-national company or a small individual working out of their home. This includes any party that is involved in the design or marketing of the product.
Retailer: A retailer who sells an item is implying that the product is safe and suitable for use. If the consumer purchases a defective item, even if it is not purchased from the manufacturer, the retailer can be held liable for damages.
Wholesaler: A wholesaler works as the bridge between the manufacturer and the retailer.
What kind of compensation can I get? When a product liability lawsuit is successful, you may be eligible for compensation for:
Special damages: This includes calculable out-of-pocket expenses or financial losses such as medical bills, hospital bills, lost wages, cost of substitute transportation and the cost to repair or replace damaged property.
General damages: This includes losses that cannot be easily calculated such as pain and suffering, mental anguish, medical expenses, value of future lost wages, loss of quality of life.