As consumers, we often assume that the products we buy are safe for use and will work as advertised. While manufacturers are legally required to ensure that their products are reasonably safe, they can make mistakes.
Sometimes, they may develop a product with innate hazards, make dangerous errors during production, or even fail to warn the consumers about a product’s potential dangers.
These products could result in severe injuries on the consumer’s part and even death. Product liability is a branch of law meant to protect consumers from the mistakes and negligence of manufacturers.
If you or a loved one was injured by a defective or dangerous product, you may be eligible for compensation. An experienced Beaufort product liability lawyer can help ensure you receive the compensation you rightfully deserve.
What is a Product Defect?
A defective product is any product with flaws in its manufacturing, errors in its design, or errors in its marketing materials and/or instructions. A product is considered defective if it becomes unreasonably unsafe or dangerous when used as intended.
In a legally defective product, some error or flaw in the product’s production, design, or labeling and marketing causes it to be harmful to the end consumer.
It’s worth noting that if a person is injured while using a product in a way that’s not intended by the manufacturer, the product isn’t necessarily considered defective.
Some of the commonly defective products include vehicles and their parts, children’s safety products, toys and playground equipment, carbon monoxide, and smoke detectors, hair care products, commercial manufacturing equipment, safety devices like earplugs, lawn equipment, prescription and over-the-counter medications, undeclared allergens, electronic devices, exercise equipment, and more.
Types of Product Defects
There are three main types of product defects that a plaintiff can allege in a product liability claim, as outlined below:
A design defect means that the product has an inherent problem in the way that it was designed. It also means that the product is present in the entire product line. The problem could be with the blueprint or concept of the product rather than its manufacture. Some examples of design defects include:
- A car with an unreasonable tendency to roll over.
- A car set that tends to unlatch during expected accident forces.
- A medical device with a premature failure rate.
- A power tool that lacks a proper safety guard.
To be successful with a design defect claim, the user has to demonstrate that there’s a reasonable alternative design that would prevent the product from being unreasonably dangerous.
Here, the defect is only present on a specific number of the product. The problem essentially occurred on the production line and was perhaps caused by a bad batch of ingredients or components. Some examples of manufacturing defects include:
- A heating pad that ends up causing burns due to faulty wiring.
- A baby formula that’s blemished with a bad ingredient or is mislabeled.
- A water heater that causes scald due to a defective thermostat.
Failure to Warn
This is a claim based on the marketing materials or instructions that came with the product. Failure to warn claims assert that the product failed to provide adequate warning to the user or no warning of a potential hazard. Examples of failure to warn issues include:
- Failure to warn about known interactions with other drugs.
- Failure to warn about hazards that are not obvious to the user.
- Failure to warn about dangers specific to children.
In some cases, a defective product could fall into more than one category. All in all, product liability cases are generally complex and expensive to pursue due to the amount of effort required to successfully prove a case.
It’s important to hire an experienced Beaufort product liability attorney to help protect your rights and get the best chance of a successful claim.
Why Hire a Product Liability Lawyer?
Aside from the complexities of these types of cases, victims of product liability injuries are usually contending with corporations with huge legal divisions dedicated to defending the manufacturers against lawsuits.
The investigation and discovery phase of product liability cases is quite intense, and it requires ample resources and extensive investigation skills. This is why legal representation from an experienced lawyer is vital if you want to succeed in obtaining the compensation you deserve.
At McDougall Law, we have the skills, experience, and resources to obtain the compensation you deserve in your product liability lawsuit. We are not afraid to take on big manufacturers and distributors who bring unsafe and defective products into the market.
How to Know if You Have a Product Liability Case?
There are four main elements you need to demonstrate to have a valid product liability claim and successfully secure compensation. We can help you substantiate the following elements of a product liability claim:
- The defective product directly caused your injury: You must show that your injuries or losses directly originate from the defective product.
- The product itself exhibits the defect: You need to show beyond a reasonable doubt that the product has a design or manufacturing flaw, or inadequate instructions or warnings.
- The product’s defect was responsible for your injuries: You must demonstrate the link between the flaw and your injuries, such that any other contributing factors can be ruled out.
- You used the product as intended: You need to also demonstrate that you were using the products safely, in its intended scope of use, and in a manner the manufacturer should have reasonably foreseen.
Talk to a Beaufort South Carolina Product Liability Lawyer Today
Did you or a loved one get hurt by a product you thought was safe? Well, every year, thousands of people are injured and killed by dangerous medical devices, drugs, and defective products that shouldn’t have been on the market in the first place. You have the right to hold the manufacturer liable for the injuries and losses you suffered.
The product liability lawyers at McDougall Law take pride in holding negligent manufacturers liable for the damage unsafe products cause. We take both class action lawsuits and individual claims. Call us at 843-438-4386 to get more information about how we can help.