Have you been injured by a defective product? If the answer is yes, you need to speak to an attorney! Here’s why.
The median award given in a products liability case is $5,076,430. The amount you receive will depend on the defect and the damage or injury you suffer.
To ensure you receive adequate compensation for your injuries, you need to make a robust defective product claim.
Keep reading to learn what it takes to prove your products liability claim.
Qualifying Claim When Injured by a Defective Product
There are three types of claims you can make under California product defect law:
- Manufacturing defect
- Design defect
- Inadequate warning
You can make a claim under one or multiple of these theories in a single product liability claim.
A manufacturing defect refers to how the product is made. You can make a claim under this theory if you think there was a flaw or mistake in how the product was made.
Because product liability is a strict liability claim, you won’t need to show that the manufacturer lacked care or quality control.
Sometimes the defect happens in the design phase. Design defects are when the product manufacturing is done correctly, but the overall design is inherently dangerous.
Two tests will show if a product is unreasonably dangerous, risk/benefit, and consumer expectation. A risk/benefit test will compare the cost of making the product safer with the benefit of that product being safer.
For example, if the product only costs $20 and it costs $2,000 to make it safer, then it isn’t worth it. But if the product costs $100 and it only costs $10 per item to make it safer, then it may be worth it.
The consumer expectation test will use a common consumer standard to look at how the product should perform and the foreseeable misuse. For example, chainsaws are inherently dangerous, and the reasonable consumer would know this.
Let’s continue with the chainsaw example; while it may be difficult to make a design defect claim, you may be able to make an inadequate warning claim. In these cases, the product isn’t defective, but the defendant’s warning and directions are.
Inadequate instructions can create liability by failing to prevent damages and injuries.
The Elements You Need to Prove in a Product Liability Case
Each of these product liability claims has slightly different elements, but there are four basic requirements that they all have.
The first thing you need to prove is that the defendant is strictly liable. The defendant must have either designed, manufactured, distributed, or sold the defective product.
Your next step is to show that the product had the defect in question when it left the hands of the defendant, thus tying the defendant to the issue at hand.
As the plaintiff, you need to show that you used the product in a reasonably foreseeable manner. You can’t hold a company liable for the injury if you use the product in a completely unpredictable and not as intended.
Finally, you need to show that the injury you suffered is a direct result of the defect in the product.
Make a Defective Product Claim
If you’ve experienced an injury from a defective product, then you may have a legal claim for recovery. Defective product claims are personal injury claims, but require an extra level of expertise.
Hiring a lawyer that specializes in these types of claims can significantly increase your chances of recovery of your injuries.
Contact our team today, and let’s discuss your injuries to determine if you have a product liability claim.