What is Product Liability?
Product Liability is the legal responsibility of product manufacturers, distributors, retailers and others who make defective products to compensate for any damages that they have caused. If one of these defective products results in a personal injury or causes other damages to a consumer, the consumer (or consumers working together in a class action law suit) are eligible for recovery from the manufacturer or others.
There are three main types of product liability claims.
- Manufacturing Defects — A manufacturing defect is a product defect that occurs in the manufacturing process. It typically involves poor-quality materials or bad workmanship. For instance: if a vehicle’s frame was improperly welded or bolted to the body of the vehicle resulting in a car accident, it would be an instance of a manufacturing defect.
- Design Defects — A design defect is a product defect that occurs as a result of bad design and planning. They occur when a product is inherently dangerous or useless even though it may have been put together according to the designer’s specifications. For instance: if a vehicle’s fuel tank is designed in such a way that it explodes at a low speed collision it would be a design defect.
- Failure to Warn Defects — Failure to warn defects, or marketing defects, occur when a product contains non-obvious dangers that the consumer should have been warned about, regardless of how well the product is manufactured and designed. Potentially dangerous products should carry warning labels that explain how they should be used, under what circumstances they are likely to cause harm, and what steps should be taken in an emergency involving the product. For example: if a drug company fails to include a warning about a possible side effect and it causes harm to consumers, it would be a failure to warn defect.
What if I’m injured by a Defective Product?
Under Colorado product liability law, you have the right to have your case heard by a jury and recover damages for pain and suffering, disability, lost wages, and disfigurement, as well as future damages.
If you’re injured as the result of a defective product, one of the most important things that your lawyer needs to know is when you were injured. This is because Colorado has statutes that prevent you from making any recovery if too much time has passed from the date of your injury to the date of recovery. If you’ve been injured by a defective product make a note of what injuries and symptoms you experienced and when. Be as precise as possible.
Also: make sure you keep the defective product after your accident and do not alter or damage it in any way. Get it to an experienced product liability attorney immediately so that he can preserve the product and have it analyzed by an expert. If a defective product is not properly preserved, it can destroy a person’s right to compensation.
Should I Hire an Attorney?
Product liability law is complex and can be difficult to navigate without the help of an experienced attorney. Moreover, defendants in product liability cases are often wealthy manufacturers with practically unlimited budgets and a strong interest in protecting their product. An attorney experienced in product liability and personal injury can help protect your rights and help get you the compensation that you deserve.