Understanding Defective Products Litigation

When we purchase consumer goods, we expect them to be safe and in good working order. Unfortunately, many products fall short on both counts. US government data from the Consumer Product Safety Commission shows that defective products are responsible for roughly 29 million injuries and 21,000 deaths each year. The economic cost of defective product injuries and property damage is more than $700 billion.

Fortunately, the law protects the rights of those injured by defective merchandise.

Defective Product Litigation: The Facts

Products that malfunction when used as intended are considered defective. If these products cause injury when used, they are considered unreasonably dangerous and may be the target of defective product litigation.

Such lawsuits typically occur within state courts and are subject to the specific laws in that jurisdiction. A defective product lawsuit may allege breach of warranty, negligence or strict liability, depending on where the incident occurred.

Typically, products can have defects that fall into three categories:

  • Flaws/defects in the design
  • Flaws/defects that occur during the product’s manufacture
  • Marketing defects, such as mislabeling or incorrect/false advertising

How to Proceed With a Defective Product Lawsuit

Determining which party to sue may depend on the nature of the flaw. A design firm may be the target for design flaws, an ad agency the target for marketing defects etc. Multiple parties — from the designer to the retailer — may be involved in some legal actions.

To prevail in this kind of litigation, the injured party must show that the product was used as intended and that all warnings that accompanied the product were followed (a tag or an instructional manual, for example).

If both conditions are met and a significant injury occurred, the next step is speaking with an experienced litigator who specializes in defective product cases. This experience is critical, as this kind of litigation is often more complex than conventional personal injury cases.

Should you prevail, you may be awarded economic damages (lost wages, medical costs, property damage etc.), non-economic damages (pain and suffering) or punitive damages, if certain conditions apply.

Finding the Right Defective Products Attorney

At L&B Law Group, we have extensive experience representing the victims of defective products. If you’ve suffered an injury, we urge you to contact us at once for a consultation. We can help put you on the road to recovery.