When you buy any product from something as simple as a fidget spinner to companies buying huge pieces of machinery, you do so with a certain expectation that the product will be safe. To enforce this idea, there are a whole series of product liability laws that are designed to keep consumers safe. However, the laws don’t make products safe, they try to make manufacturers create safe products. When they fail to do so, even the simplest product can cause a debilitating injury if it were to malfunction or was made from unsafe materials. However, when you get hurt because of a product, who pays?
When it comes to a dangerous product, the lawsuit can go down several different levels. It all depends on who, if anyone, knew the product was dangerous. If there had been a recall and retailers still stocked it on shelves for sale, then that is a very clear case of negligence on their part. However, pursuing cases against retailers can be difficult, especially if you purchased the product long before the recall was ordered. If you bought the item before it was recalled, then they cannot be pursued over a negligence case.
If the retailer can’t be held responsible, then it is time to move onto the manufacturer. However, in personal injury cases, it is important to sort out who is specifically at fault. Where in the manufacturing process did the product go wrong? Is it just this one piece that is dangerous or it is all of them? If the flaw is in the blueprints, then the engineer is at fault for designing the very beginnings of an unsafe product.
However, if the blueprints were sound, but they weren’t produced that way in order to create them faster or to cut costs, then the factory management is at fault. However, very rarely do companies throw a single or small group of employees to the wolves unless it was a very serious or widespread incident. Typically when you are hurt by a dangerous product and seek legal action against the company that created it, you won’t be going after one specific area of the company, but you do still have to prove something went wrong somewhere during the manufacturing process.
Furthermore, if you were hurt by malfunctioning equipment at work, you can actually collect more than if you were hurt by a product that you owned. While if you are hurt at work you can file for worker’s compensation, although you can’t sue your employer, you can file a personal injury suit against the manufacturer of the machinery whose malfunction injured you. However, it is important to remember that if a product or piece of equipment malfunctioned due to lack of or improper maintenance, then that is the fault of the owner. This means a personal injury case cannot be filed against either the manufacturer or the retailer even if a recall order was put out.
If you have been hurt by a malfunctioning product, the unfortunate news is that no one will make filing a personal injury suit to cover your injuries easy for you. By making it complicated, they try to dissuade you from legal recourse. However, with the right lawyer it can help simplify the process to a certain degree. If you have been hurt by a product you own or a defective piece of equipment at work, contact us today. At the Harnitz Law Office not only do we represent those seeking personal injury cases, but we also represent injured workers as well to make sure that every aspect of an injury is taken care of.