A defective product is one that not only fails to live up to its expectations but can also cause severe injuries, which can leave victims with lasting pain and hardship. If you were injured by a defective product, it is helpful to familiarize yourself with the state’s consumer protection laws.
If you or someone you love has suffered an injury due to a defective product or product liability, contact Kasan Law’s Chicago and Illinois product liability attorney for a free consultation.
At Kasan Law, our Chicago and Illinois personal injury attorneys handle defective product claims in which several liable parties may be involved. We collaborate with expert witnesses to determine product defects and reasons for product recalls.
A range of industrial, medical, commercial, and consumer products may cause serious injuries to the end-users, some examples include:
Product liability is the area of law dealing with responsibility on the part of the manufacturer, wholesaler, or retailer of a product that causes injury or harm. Other parties that can be held responsible for your injuries may include the component parts maker, assemblers, stores, other sellers, and/or other parties in the distribution chain.
A product liability case can arise with the use of any product. Machinery used in industry, in the office, on the farm or in the home is frequently the cause of personal injury and product liability litigation. The same is true of food products sold in restaurants, groceries sold in supermarkets, and drug products sold over the counter or through a prescription.
Manufacturers and sellers of defective products, products whose labels or instructions fail to warn you of the likely hazards of improper use, or products that have been marketed irresponsibly may be responsible under the legal theory of product liability for any injury caused by such products.
There are several ways a product liability case can arise. In some cases, the product may have been designed incorrectly. In other cases, the design of the product may have been correct. Still, the product defect occurred during the manufacturing phase. Another possibility is that the product was designed and manufactured correctly but marketed in a way that caused the injury, such as with insufficient warnings or instruction.
Breach of warranty and misrepresentation in advertising can also give rise to a product liability lawsuit if the product’s use resulted in harm to the user. Any of these defects may raise the legal issue of product liability.
In a product liability situation in Chicago or elsewhere in Illinois, the manufacturer or the seller of the product may be at fault under the legal theories of negligence or strict liability. Strict liability means that a consumer has the right to not be injured if they use the product in the way it was intended to be used and according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
Even if the product was designed, manufactured, and marketed according to the law, you might still receive compensation under the rules of strict liability if you properly used the product, and the product nevertheless harmed you with the help of our Chicago and Illinois personal injury lawyers.
The doctrine of “res ispa loquitur,” which is Latin for “the thing speaks for itself,” means the burden of proof is on the defendant(s). If the doctrine of res ispa loquitur is successfully invoked, the burden of proof is shifted to the defendant in establishing they were not negligent.
Manufacturers typically defend product liability lawsuits by claiming improper use, failure to heed warnings or follow instructions, or alterations to the product by the purchaser. If the manufacturer of the product is negligent, the manufacturer may be held accountable for any injuries sustained by the consumer under the legal theory of product liability. Depending on the product involved and type of injury, product liability law, state and federal statutes, and regulations may be relevant to your situation.
If a defective product caused the tragic loss of a loved one, you might have a wrongful death claim in addition to your product liability case.
Some products cannot be made safer without using their usefulness. Consumers and users of these products are the ones who are supposed to minimize risk. Therefore, when a product may not be deemed to be unreasonably dangerous, manufacturers of these products must give sufficient warnings on the risks and dangers of their products, so the consumers can make informed, responsible, intelligent decisions about whether or not to purchase them.
Some unavoidably unsafe products include:
There is a surprising list of items that one may think was unavoidably unsafe products, but actually are not, such as natural gas stoves, fire extinguishers, cars, and folding chairs.
One common defense is that the victim did not sufficiently connect the supplier of the product that allegedly caused the injury.
An exception to this rule, involving defective medications, is called “market share liability.” When a plaintiff is unable to which pharmaceutical companies took the drug, which caused an injury, each individual manufacturer will be held liable to prove innocence according to its percentage of sales in the area where the injury occurred.
Another potential defense from the manufacturer is that the victim intentionally altered the product when it was out of control for the manufacturer. According to that strategy, since the product was changed after it was sold, the injury is the plaintiff’s fault.
Related to the above defense is that a victim misused the product in an unforeseeable way. The misuse of the product caused the injuries, not the product itself.
At Kasan Law, we take all personal injury cases on a contingency basis, which means you will not pay any legal fees unless we get you compensation for your case. Our consultations are free and carry no obligations.
If you or a family member has been injured as a result of someone else’s negligence, contact our Chicago and Illinois product liability attorneys to schedule your free consultation and case review by calling (312) 300-6724, e-mailing us at [email protected], or schedule your consultation online.