As a consumer, you trust manufacturing companies to produce items that will not harm you, your children or loved ones. However, these companies operate with a priority on profits, not safety. Corporations may therefore neglect safety tests and other procedures, putting defective and dangerous products on the market. Product defects in children’s toys, medications, auto parts, appliances or virtually any item can cause disabling injuries or wrongful death. Yet, the companies that profit from these products may deny responsibility entirely or drag out injury claims, keeping the dangerous item on the market while the case goes on. In the face of such powerful opposition, an injured individual may be unable to fight back alone. At Hardball Law, Maryland product liability lawyer Susan R. Green has dedicated her career to standing up against powerful entities that operate under the assumption that financial gain justifies negligence that causes injuries and death. No matter how tough the opposition or how expansive the company, she does not give up. As an aggressive litigator, she will fight for your rights and will find creative legal solutions so that you get the compensation you deserve.
What are the Different Types of Product Defects?
Specific types of product defects may vary widely and often depend on the product itself. However, based on the root cause, most defects fall into three general categories. Determining what kind of defect caused your injuries can help determine the liable parties. The three general defect types are:
- Design defects. In some cases, the design of the product presents unreasonable hazards to users. In general, companies must test new projects to eliminate design defects. However, some companies may overlook or ignore certain necessary tests. For example, a pharmaceutical company may rush a drug to market and fail to identify a serious side effect, such as the risk of developing cancer.
- Manufacturing defects. Errors during the physical production of an item can also cause dangerous flaws. A manufacturing defect may result from use of substandard materials, contamination, improper assembly or other negligence. For instance, a tire with a manufacturing defect may be more prone to failure, potentially causing a serious crash.
- Labeling defects. Product manufacturers must include proper labels and instructions detailing the item’s correct use. If any known dangers exist, then there must also be warning labels to prevent inadvertent injury. For example, certain toys have small parts that are a choking hazard for very young children. These items must have clear labels stating a safe age range for users. Failure to warn consumers of such dangers, even if the product is safe for certain uses, can cause injuries, illness and wrongful death.
Depending on the circumstances and the type of defect, several different parties may be liable for your injuries and damages under product liability law. These include not only the manufacturer, but the retailer, suppliers, consultants, contractors, designers and quality control companies as well. Essentially, any parties involved with the product could be legally responsible for a defect.
When Can I File a Product Liability Claim?
If a labeling, design or manufacturing defect causes serious injuries to you or a loved one, then you may be able to recover compensation for your medical bills and other damages. The specifics of different product liability claims may vary widely, depending on the type of product and defect. However, for your case to be successful, you and your attorney must demonstrate:
- The product was defective. For items that are subject to product recalls, proving a defect may be relatively straightforward. However, in many cases, the manufacturer and other parties may dispute that defects exist. This allows them to continue to profit as long as the product remains on the market. If so, then your attorney can investigate the production process and hire experts to inspect the item to prove liability.
- The defect directly caused your injury or actual damages. To recover compensation, your injuries must have been caused by the defect itself. Additionally, even if a product malfunctions, breaks or causes an accident, you generally cannot file a successful claim unless you sustained actual damages.
- You used the product as intended. Since some products are safe only for certain uses, you must have been using the item as directed when the accident occurred. Sometimes, defendant companies may try to shift the blame by claiming that you did not use the product correctly. However, if the product did not contain adequate directions or warnings, then you may still be able to recover based on a labeling defect.
Connect With Our Maryland Product Liability Lawyer For A Free Consultation
If a company’s negligence caused your injuries or a loved one’s wrongful death, then you should be able to recover compensation from that company. However, these parties rarely admit to negligence and often fight ruthlessly to protect their revenue-stream. Even when product recalls are issued, victims of product defects may find it difficult to obtain fair compensation.
Baltimore, Maryland product liability lawyer Susan R. Green has a reputation for taking on – and winning – tough cases against powerful opponents. Manufacturers and pharmaceutical companies have the resources to fiercely defend their interests. However, Susan Green will meet this opposition head-on. She will fight for your right to compensation and will not back down. Contact Hardball Law in Baltimore, Maryland to schedule a free initial consultation today.