Prior to introducing a product to market, companies must be sure that their products do not pose risks to their consumers. The average manufacturer completes a lengthy risk assessment process to ensure that their customers are protected, but sometimes products are released and used that are significantly dangerous. When this happens and a consumer is injured by a defective or dangerous product, a product liability claim may be initiated. There are three common types of product liability claims, and being aware of them could help you determine whether your situation could be grounds for a claim against a business.
Inadequate Instructions or Warnings
Companies are expected to provide their customers with clear instructions and appropriate warnings regarding the use of a product. This expectation is especially important when a product poses a danger or risk that is not immediately obvious to the average user. Failure to provide a warning could result in a claim. Scenarios that could lead to a claim based on a company’s failure to warn or instruct include:
- Medication does not list dangerous drug interaction side effects;
- Chemicals that do not provide instructions for safe handling;
- Electronics without warnings regarding oddly placed sharp edges or discharge valves.
If you are injured because of a side effect or adverse reaction that you could not be expected to know about, you may have a valid claim.
One of the most common and widely recognized types of product liability claims are those associated with defectively manufactured items. These are items that are dangerous because of a flaw caused when the product was manufactured. Situations such as a dog food tainted by a toxic substance or a child’s play set manufactured with a cracked frame are examples of manufacturing defects.
Products Designed with Defects
Occasionally a manufacturer will create a new product that has a design flaw that creates an unforeseen, but still dangerous, potential for harm during the normal handling of the product. In these cases, the products are made according to the manufacturers plans, but the design contains a defect that makes basic use hazardous. Sunbeam Corporation found itself in Maryland court defending against a product defect lawsuit after one of the company’s electric blankets was accused of being source of a fire that destroyed part of a family’s house. More recently, owners of sports utility vehicles (SUVs) alleged that making turns at normal speeds caused their vehicles to overturn. Both claims represent potential design defects that manufacturers overlooked when creating a product.
Talk to an Attorney
If you or someone close to you has recently been injured or suffered a loss because of a product defect, it is important to seek proper legal representation. A qualified product liability attorney can review the circumstances surrounding your case and help you determine the best course of action. The team at Brassel Alexander, LLC understands how stressful any injury, illness, or loss caused by a defective product is to manage. We work on your behalf to help you obtain the compensation you deserve while providing you the legal advice you need. Contact our office today to schedule a consultation so that we can begin discussing your claim.