Austin Product Liability Lawyer
Every year there are tens of thousands of new products introduced into the marketplace. Of these, a certain percent are not going to be safe for people to buy and use. There are many factors that contribute to a product being safe and all of these pieces must work together, in harmony, to keep consumers protected. Many times,one small thing has failed or slipped through the cracks that ends up making the whole product unsafe. We understand the many varieties of product liability and how to use the consumer protection laws to get our clients the compensation they deserve for the injuries or death suffered at the hands of negligent companies.
Many products are recalled every year when they are found to be defective or dangerous in some way. Unfortunately, these recalls are the result, not the prevention, of injuries or death. Consumers are all too often the guinea pigs for new products. When the problems with products have been demonstrated in homes all across America, then they are subject to recall.
What is Product Liability?
Product liability is a legal expression that holds the manufacturer or seller of a product responsible for any injury or death resulting from the use of that product. Product liability extends to any person or entity that had a hand in selling the imperfect product to the public. Beginning with the manufacturer of the product and manufacturer of any parts of the final product, the company that distributed the product, the suppliers of the product, to the retail store where the product was purchased. Product liability can apply to the entire supply chain of a defective or dangerous product.
Product Liability, like other personal injury cases, has to meet the same standards of negligence. We have the experience to aggressively represent our clients in all personal injury cases, including product liability. Holding companies to the highest standard in safety is a responsibility we take seriously.
The three main areas where products can be found to be deficient are:
1. Manufacturing Defect: These cases show that the manufacturer did not make the product correctly. Under the definition of “strict liability,” there is no requirement that the manufacturer was negligent, only that the product was defective in some way.
Cars have literally thousands of parts that are designed to work together, but if just one fails, the consequences can be devastating. There have been many product liability cases involving cars, everything from seat belts that do not latch properly, to tires that come apart. These problems happened during the manufacturing of a small component of the whole car. These types of problems usually trigger recalls so the car can be refitted with new items, but that is only after they are found by consumers to be defective.
2. Design Defect: These defects are inherent flaws in the product from the time it was designed or drawn. They might include sharp corners or unprotected belts that can fly off when they are worn and thin.
Bicycles are made with chain guards that are supposed to cover the chain. When the chain turns to propel the bike, the rider is protected from the chain by the guard. If the bicycle were not properly designed, the rider could have a foot or garment pulled into the turning chain, causing a fall. That could be very dangerous, but commuting in traffic could make a fall with a few bruises turn into a tragedy. Under The Texas Products Liability Act, the injured party must show that there is a safer way to make the same product.
3. Marketing Defect (failure to warn): These are general warnings that have been omitted from a label that, therefore, failed to warn the consumers, who could have protected themselves with the proper information. These types of defects can range in severity, but if an injury results, the companies are liable for the damages. A good example of this type of defect would be a food label that omitted the presence of peanuts in a product.
Many people are deathly allergic to peanuts and consuming even a small amount can result in a trip to the emergency room. Had the product been properly labeled and listed peanuts as an ingredient, the injury would not have happened, because the person would not have eaten it.
Any Product Can be Defective or Dangerous
The list of possible products that could be subject to a product liability lawsuit is limitless, think of every product that can be purchased. Sadly, some of the most dangerous products that cause the greatest number of injuries are those that are highly regulated and inspected by the government. These include:
Pharmaceutical Drugs and Medical Implants / Devices
Automobiles, Motorcycles and All types of Recreational and Sports vehicles
Toys to Tools
There is almost no limit to the possibility that something can go wrong with a product or the whole product line. We are a nation of consumers and the more we buy, the more our chances of purchasing a defective or dangerously made product increase.
What is the Benefit of having an Experienced Attorney?
Because these cases include various companies, with a fleet of insurance companies, who have full-time departments full of attorneys to defend them, it is important to retain the help of an experienced attorney to stand up against their power. These cases are almost never won without a competent advocate fighting for the injured person’s rights.
There is something bigger at stake in most product liability cases. These products are sold all over the country and the chance there is only one person or family suffering due to a defective or dangerous product is slim. The problems with these products need to be exposed so others might be spared from the pain and anguish associated with these products. Companies make money selling their products to innocent, unsuspecting consumers. When they release harm among consumers, they need to be held accountable for the damage they cause.