What are the Different Types of Product Defects?
San Diego Product Liability Lawyer Explains Common Dangers
A defect can originate during any stage of a product’s design, manufacture or even marketing. Depending on the source of the dangerous flaw, different parties may be liable for the injuries and damages that result from defective products. These parties may include the product manufacturer(s) and retail sellers. However, determining liability for product defects can be difficult without the help of an attorney, especially as companies often deny the existence of dangerous defects or try to avoid liability by blaming other parties.
San Diego product liability lawyer Frederick M. Dudek has experience investigating and representing defect claims. If product defects caused your injuries or a loved one’s wrongful death, then Attorney Dudek can assist you in determining all responsible parties. He can also gather evidence and consult experts to help support your product liability lawsuit.
What are the Types of Product Defects?
Product flaws can vary greatly and can therefore cause a wide range of injuries and illnesses. However, there are three general types of product defects, which depend on the origin of the error. These are:
- Design defects. Some products are inherently dangerous due to faults in their overall design. Defective drugs can suffer from flawed design and insufficient research, causing a medical condition to worsen or result in additional injuries to patients. Pharmaceutical companies and other manufacturers must perform extensive research, safety tests and checks to discover adverse side effects and other dangers. When companies ignore or overlook these tests during the design stage, then defective drugs can result.
- Manufacturing defects. Even if the concept of a product is inherently safe, errors or negligence during the actual manufacture of the item can still cause dangerous flaws. For example, the use of substandard materials during the production of items such as knee implants can result in defective medical devices that may fail, causing severe injuries or wrongful death.
- Labeling defects. Companies have a duty to ensure their products are safe for their intended use. Therefore, these companies must include clear labels and instructions so that consumers understand how to use the item. Additionally, manufacturers must have obvious warning labels that draw attention to any known dangers associated with the product. Otherwise, consumers may sustain preventable injuries due to the misuse of reasonably safe products. For example, medications must include warnings of any known side effects and contraindications. Additionally, if the medication interacts negatively with other drugs or poses a risk to certain patients, then the labels must include this information as well.
When Can I File a Product Liability Lawsuit?
If you or a loved one was harmed by a dangerous product, then you may be able to recover compensation from the designer, manufacturer, retailer, distributor and/or other liable parties. However, you and your product liability lawyer must demonstrate more than simply the fact that defects exist. In general, the elements of a product liability claim that you must prove are:
- You or a loved one sustained injuries. As with any type of personal injury claim, you generally cannot collect compensation unless you suffered material damages. This can include serious injuries like spine or brain injuries as well as serious medical conditions, such as the development of cancer from certain medications.
- Product defects exist. This is often the most complex step of a product liability claim. Expert opinions, independent testing and other procedures are often required to prove a preventable flaw exists. In many cases, demonstrating that a product is dangerous is not enough; you must have evidence that the product creates unreasonable risks.
- The defect directly caused your injuries. Your injuries must have resulted from the defect, not simply the product. For example, your car may have defects making it prone to rollover accidents, but if your injuries resulted from being rear-ended by a drunk driver, then you likely cannot file a product liability claim for product defects. However, if the rear-end crash in this case caused your car to roll over, compounding your injuries, then you might have grounds for an auto defects claim.
- You did not misuse the product. Many products may be dangerous if you use them incorrectly. Therefore, to file a product liability lawsuit, your injuries must have resulted when you were using the item correctly, per the label or instructions, or otherwise in a reasonably foreseeable way.
More Questions? Contact a San Diego Product Liability Lawyer Today
If you sustained serious injuries or lost a loved one due to product defects, then you may be able to collect compensation for your medical bills and other damages. San Diego product liability lawyer Frederick M. Dudek can determine whether your case meets the requirements for a lawsuit. If so, then he can find all liable parties, maximizing your chances of a successful recovery. He can represent your interests in negotiations or the courtroom, and always provides personalized, professional advocacy.
Contact Attorney Dudek today to schedule your free initial consultation.