Let’s consider a situation wherein you use a product that you have used many times before – except this time, there was a bad batch due to negligence of a manufacturing company. If you were injured, where do you turn? How do you receive compensation for your injuries and hold the right person liable? You can find out more about the theories involved and if you have a claim.
Breach of Express Warranty
Did the product come with a written warranty or perhaps even a guarantee? If the product violated that warranty, then you may have a defective product claim. Warranties may be written on the product’s label or packaging, in the instructions or paperwork, on any signs or marketing material, or any advertising used to sell the product. If an advertisement shows the product being used for something it isn’t actually intended for, and you end up becoming injured, then you may be able to bring a claim against the company. This is false advertisement in a way that has injured you and possibly many others.
Breach of Implied Warranty
What are implied warranties? These are warranties that the law automatically applies to your product, meaning that it doesn’t have to be guaranteed by the manufacturer or store where you bought said product. These come in two forms:
- Implied Warranty of Merchantability: This means that the product was guaranteed to reasonable fit the purpose for which it was sold.
- Implied Warranty of Fitness For a Particular Purpose: This fits a case where a seller knows that the consumer intends to use the product for a particular purpose. It is an additional guarantee that the product will be fit for said purpose.
Strict Product Liability
In a strict liability case, a company will be liable regardless of whatever care or precautions it took to prevent an accident. This means that, when you present your claim, you will not need to show that the manufacturer or supplier of the product was not sufficiently careful in making or distributing the product – only that the product is somehow defective and that the defect caused your injury. Generally, these three things are considered:
- Did the product have an unreasonably dangerous defect that injured you and may have come into existence in the design of the product, during manufacture, or during handling and shipment?
- Has the defect caused the injury while the product was being used in the way it was intended?
- Has the product not been substantially changed from the condition in which it was originally sold to you as the consumer (FindLaw)?
If you believe negligence is a factor in your claim, you must be able to show that the defendants were not reasonably careful in making or distributing the defective product. This can be a difficult thing to prove because there is a lot involved in these cases. It could be anything from a huge pharmaceutical company making a mistake in engineering, or a moped dealer failing to inspect brake pads on a moped.
Intentional Misrepresentation or Fraud
Were deliberately misleading statements made about the product that injured you and that a defendant knew of dangerous defects associated with the product? Do you feel like warnings were concealed? You may have a claim for intentional misrepresentation due to fraudulent conduct. For instance, if a manufacturer released records that there were dangers in a drug they distributed, and you took it and became injured as a result, you may have a claim.
If you have become injured due to a defective product, you may have a case. You could be entitled to rightful compensation for your injuries, but you will need to prove your case to the best of your ability. Was a manufacturer responsible for your injury, or somebody else in the chain of distribution? Call us at WTW for a consultation and review of your case.