In sum, product liability is a responsibility imposed upon manufacturers and other companies involved with ensuring an item is safe for consumers. While you may not have personal experience with the topic, there’s a good chance you’ve at least heard about dangerous products in the news. These cases make headlines not only because of the extreme nature of the defect and massive number of injured victims, but also the high monetary damages awards won by claimants.
If you’re hurt because of a defect or other problem with a consumer product, you too may have legal rights. You should discuss the specifics with an Atlanta, GA product liability attorney, and check out a helpful overview on the basic legal principles.
The Dangers of Defective Products: There are three different scenarios that can lead a consumer product to be defective to the point of presenting a serious risk to the user. They include:
- Defects in the manufacturing process, which only affect a single lot of items produced according to the flaw;
- Defective design, where the product itself – and all other items produced according to the original blueprint – are flawed; and,
- The failure to warn, classified as a labelling flaw. This defect occurs when a product doesn’t include essential instructions for use or warnings about the risks it may present.
Legal Basis for Products Liability Cases: There are multiple theories of liability that may allow injured victims to recover monetary damages for losses caused by a defective product. The first is Georgia’s product liability law, which provides that a manufacturer is strictly liable for defects. You don’t need to prove fault, but you must show that the flaw existed when the product was manufactured.
Another approach to liability is the concept of negligence, which refers to a breach of duty. A manufacturer may be held accountable if the company offers a product for sale, but it contains a feature that’s reasonably certain to cause bodily harm.
Note that the two-year statute of limitations in a product liability case applies regardless of whether your claim is based upon strict liability or negligence.
High Profile Products Liability Cases Making Headlines: One of the most prominent subjects of litigation in this area right now is Monsanto’s weed killer RoundUp. Atlanta’s Fox News Channel 5 recently reported on a successful case brought by two plaintiffs who contracted cancer due to years of exposure to glyphosate, the active ingredient in RoundUp. In addition, other products liability cases in the news include:
- Talcum powder;
- E-Cigarettes and other products containing lithium batteries;
- Pradaxa and related blood thinner drugs; and,
- Many more.
Schedule a Consultation with an Atlanta, GA Product Liability Lawyer
From this description, you can see that products liability cases are highly complex. The relevant issues are complicated, but you could also be up against a manufacturer with a large legal department and massive budget for fighting your claim. Instead of putting your rights at risk, trust an attorney to protect your interests. To learn more about your remedies in a products liability case, please contact the Law Offices of Julie A. Rice to set up a free assessment.