When you purchase a product for yourself or someone else, you shouldn’t have to worry that the product is faulty or dangerous. Unfortunately, defective products do exist, and can cause serious injuries to consumers. Toy-related injuries alone affect over 20,000 kids each year, according to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC).
If you’ve been injured by a potentially faulty product in California, you may be able to receive financial compensation by filing a product liability claim. At the Scott Carr Law Firm, we are dedicated to helping victims pursue fair compensation to cover medical bills and other costs related to their injuries from defective products. Call 415-799-2229 to schedule a consultation or contact our office using the form on our website.
Categories of Product Liability Claims
Depending on the type of defect, you may be able to file a lawsuit against the product manufacturer, the wholesaler, or the distributor. Most faulty products fall under three categories of product liability: defective design, defective manufacture, or failure to warn.
Defective design is an error in the initial design or blueprint of a product. That means the entire line of products is inherently defective and/or dangerous, not just one.
One example of defective design is a model of car that has a high risk of rolling or flipping over due to a top-heavy and tall design. If a person got into an accident and suffered severe injuries because the car rolled over, they may be able to file a product liability lawsuit.
Defective manufacture is an error in the manufacturing process, creating a defective and/or dangerous product. In this case, the product itself is safe, but a manufacturing mistake caused it to be unsafe.
One example of defective manufacture is a stroller missing an important piece on one of the wheels. This manufacturing error can cause the wheel to fall off, posing a hazard to a child in the stroller.
Failure to warn
Failure to warn a consumer of potential risks in using the product can lead to a product liability lawsuit. If there were no warning labels or instructions present that could have prevented an injury, a person could file a product liability claim.
California’s Product Liability Laws
In California, companies can be held legally liable, or responsible, for injuries caused by defective products, even without proving that the company was negligent. This is called strict liability standard. It is the opposite of what’s usually required in a personal injury claim, in which you must prove negligence in order to win your case.
There is a time limit for filing a product liability lawsuit. If you were injured by a product, you can file a claim within two years of discovering that the product caused you harm — not two years from the date of your injury. Similarly, if a product caused damage to your property, you can file a property damage lawsuit within three years of discovery.
It’s important to understand and remember California’s statutes of limitation in product liability laws, because they can affect the outcome of your product liability lawsuit. You’d still be able to file a claim, but it’s much more likely to be dismissed if you file too late.
How the Scott Carr Law Firm Can Help You
Although California’s strict liability standard makes it seem easy to file a product liability lawsuit, that’s not exactly true. You must prove that you were injured as a result of using a certain product, as well as show how the product was defective in manufacture or design, or failed to warn of any danger. Furthermore, you must file your claim within the statute of limitations.
Filing a lawsuit on your own is not easy, and a product liability attorney can help shoulder the burden for you. An experienced attorney can ensure that you file properly, include all important evidence, and handle communication with companies and lawyers so you don’t have to.
If you or a loved one has been injured by a defective product or a product that contained inadequate warnings or instructions, the Scott Carr Law firm can help. Call 415-799-2229 to schedule a consultation or contact our office on our website.