Product Liability and Personal Injury: What You Need to Know
Product liability can apply to a personal injury case when a product’s use results in an injury. While it would seem that this is a simple definition with a simple application, pursuing and succeeding in a product liability case can be a complex, confusing, and complicated process. If you have been injured by a product, you need to hire a personal injury lawyer as soon as you can so that they can assess your case and provide you with a synopsis of what to expect.
Product liability applies when negligence, manufacturer defect, design defect, lack of warning, or manufacturer negligence results in a product causing an injury when it is used as directed. The "use as directed" clause is important, because if a product can be construed to have been used outside of any warnings or proper use, product liability doesn't apply. There generally are two types of product liability, that will apply to most personal injury cases; your Bradenton, FL, personal injury lawyer can help you determine which, if any, apply to your situation.
The first type of product liability is when a product that causes an injury that's the result of negligence on the part of the manufacturer. That can be the case because of assembly error due to a malfunctioning machine, a quality control issue, negligence on the assembler’s part (a negligent act or omission of an act in the manufacturing process), or an issue with the actual manufacturing process. If any of the above can be proven, the injured can receive damages under personal injury law.
The second major part of product liability is when there's a defect in the design of a product. If a product design is dangerous or it can be shown is prone to be misused by a customer, the product must carry a warning. The risk of injury, even if the product is not used as intended, must not be obvious to the consumer. This is in part why many products have so long and obvious warnings.
Reasonable Assumption And Strict Liability
The legal assumption is that with every product on the shelf for purchase, the consumer can reasonably assume it's safe to use as directed. Because of that, liability cases are treated as a matter of strict liability, which is to say that the manufacturer will be responsible for injuries provide the product is defective. Strict liability means that even if a manufacturer was not negligent, the fact a consumer was injured is enough to collect damages, provided they can prove their own action(s) didn't contribute to the injury.
Breach of Warranty
A Breach of Warranty is, as the name implies, when the manufacturer fails to live up to a written guarantee. This failure must result in a personal injury for it to apply to a personal injury case. In this case, negligence can be a factor in determining responsibility.
These are the basics of product liability and personal injury legal cases. If you think you have a product liability issue pertaining to a personal injury lawsuit, call Erjavec Injury Law and hire the best personal injury lawyer in Bradenton, FL.