San Bernardino Product Liability Attorney
Back in 2002, a woman sued Philip Morris because she claimed her lung cancer was from smoking cigarettes. In her lawsuit, she stated that the tobacco company failed to warn her about the risks of smoking. As a result, she developed an addiction to tobacco and later suffered from lung cancer. While the damages were later reduced to just $28 million, she was initially awarded $28 billion in punitive damages.
Some produce liability cases result in monetary awards of millions or billions of dollars. In other cases, the defendant wants a few thousand dollars to cover medical bills. With the help of a product liability attorney, San Bernardino residents can determine if they have a product liability case. Then, they can seek just compensation for their damages.
What Is Product Liability?
Product liability refers to a party’s responsibility to make a functioning product. A defect can occur at any step in the chain of manufacturing. A company could be the target of a product liability case if it assembled the product, made component parts, or sold the product.
A product could be the target of a lawsuit if it contains defects that could harm a customer. Products do not have to be tangible, physical items to be considered products. Written items like maps, natural things like livestock, and intangible things like gasoline are also considered products.
Product liability is used for a variety of different kinds of cases. For example, one woman sued McDonald’s because she received burns from overly hot coffee. This famous case has been joked about in the news, but the case’s actual evidence was quite strong. Before the coffee case, McDonald’s would heat their coffee to an excessively high temperature so that it would still be hot by the time customers returned to work. In the hot coffee case, the woman accidentally spilled the coffee on herself right after she bought it. Because the coffee was hotter than it should have been, she suffered severe burns to her thighs and was hospitalized. Thanks to this case, McDonald’s lowered the temperature of its coffee to a safe level and added a warning label to its cups.
Car companies have also been the target of product liability cases. For instance, a 2010 case involved a defect in Toyota cars that led to car accidents. In 2008, General Motors (GM) lost a product liability case because GM vehicles kept leaking coolant and developing engine damage.
What Are the Different Types of Product Liability?
There are a few basic types of product liability claims you can make. Before you file your case, talk to your product liability lawyer about your case. With the help of an attorney, you can determine which kind of case you need to file and how to support your claim.
One common type of product liability claim is known as a design defect claim. This kind of case involves a product that has a defective design. Something about the product’s design must be inherently flawed, so the final product will always be defective if it was made according to the design. For example, a baby crib may be designed with slats that trap the baby’s head. Even though the product was made according to the design, it is still dangerous because the design was inherently defective.
Manufacturing defects are the most common type of product liability case. To have a manufacturing defect, the product must have been manufactured in a way that made the product unsafe. With this type of product liability, the product’s design is safe and correct. Instead of having a problem with the design, the product has an issue with the way it was manufactured. For example, a space heater could have a completely safe design. If the space heater is made with the wrong part, it could end up starting a fire.
Warning and Labeling Defects
The final example of product liability involves warning and labeling defects. If a product does not have a warning and needs one, the company that made it could be liable for damages. You will often see this kind of case with prescription medications. Johnson & Johnson was also involved in this kind of case. In the case, a woman sued Johnson & Johnson for not warning that the company’s baby powder could cause cancer if it were used on a daily basis.
Who Can Sue for Product Liability?
If you are uncertain about whether you can sue a company, a product liability lawyer can review your case. San Bernardino residents may have a product liability case if they have been harmed after using a product. You can sue if you suffered from monetary losses or some kind of injury because you used the product.
To build your case, you must show that the product had a design, manufacturing, or marketing defect. This defect must have caused your injury. In addition, you must have used the product in the way it was supposed to be used.
What Are the Major Types of Injuries?
After talking to your product liability attorney, you can determine if you have a product liability case. In your claim, you can seek compensation for physical pain, suffering, lost wages, medical expenses, and psychological trauma. In addition, you can get compensation for any other damages that are considered fair in a court of law.
Why Should You Hire a Product Liability Lawyer?
In your product liability case, you must prove that you have been injured. Your injury must be due to the defective product. In addition, you must prove that you were using the product correctly when the injury occurred.
Unless you are an experienced attorney, proving your case can be challenging. The defendant will try to prove that you were using the product incorrectly so that they do not have to pay any damages. These kinds of cases are extremely complex, so you need someone who knows how to file the case, discovers evidence, and proves your argument in the courtroom.
If you need a product liability attorney, the team at Rizio Lipinsky can help. We have years of experience in helping our clients with product liability cases. To get a free consultation and learn more about our services, contact us today.