What Is Product Liability?

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A product liability case arises when a product that is dangerous and defective causes injuries to somebody.

Some examples might be there could be a machine accident where a person is working in a factory, and the machine did not come with an adequate guard, and the person’s hand and arm got entangled within the machine because of the lack of guarding. In that case, the machine manufacturer would be a defendant, with the idea that the machine was designed improperly.

Another example would be that if medical devices are manufactured and sold, and they’re defective, and they cause harm, like a defective pacemaker or a defective lead going to a defibrillator, that can be a product liability case.

There are many different types of products, of course, and usually a case depends on whether you can prove that a product was either designed improperly or that it was manufactured improperly. Sometimes a design itself is defective; other times the design is okay, but in the manufacturing process, something went wrong.

If that product causes injuries to a person, then a product liability case can be brought, and the damage elements are just like the damage elements in a negligence case—medical bills, pain and suffering, lost income, and future medical bills, permanent impairment, those types of things. Those are all encompassed within what we call a product liability case.

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