We often take for granted that the products we buy and use are safe – but defective products are more common than you might think. And defects can cause a lot of harm.
The legal field of product liability steps in to protect consumers, users, and even bystanders who have been injured by defective products. While it may feel overwhelming to try to hold a large company or major corporation accountable for your injuries, an experienced product liability lawyer can help level the field between you and the people responsible. A successful product liability claim can compensate you financially for your medical bills and other losses.
If you’ve been injured by a product, you’re not alone – and you have rights.
Examples of Products With Design Defects
A design defect happens when something inherent in the product itself – something in the product’s blueprint – is flawed, making it dangerous for its intended use. Even if there were no manufacturing errors with the product, even if the product came off the assembly line perfectly as it was intended, that product would still pose a danger of injury.
- Airbags – Even though airbags are designed with the purpose of saving lives, a faulty design can have the opposite effect. In recent years, car manufacturers have recalled millions of airbags because they deployed with excessive force or shattered on impact, causing serious injuries, some fatal, to drivers and front-seat passengers.
- Children’s Toys – You expect children’s toys to be designed with safety in mind, but defective toys make it on the market on a regular basis. Many toys have design flaws that make them a choking hazard, expose sharp edges, or use toxic materials that break down when ingested. These defects put children at serious risk, leading to lawsuits.
- Medical Devices – Implants, testing equipment, and other medical devices are critical for patients to get the treatment they need. In many cases, a medical device could mean the difference between life and death. So when these devices end up defective, they can cause serious health problems for thousands or millions of people who rely on them for accurate information and proper functionality. Even something as innocuous as an over-the-counter blood oxygen monitor can be dangerous when defective.
Sometimes, design defects can affect a large number of users – thousands or even millions of people could get hurt depending on a product’s popularity. These large cases can come together to form a class action case representing a “class” of people who have similar injuries.
In a class action case, a handful of “typical” injury cases represent the class as a whole, but all of the victims, or “class members,” can get their share of a financial settlement.
Examples of Products With Manufacturing Defects
A manufacturing defect happens when a product is designed properly but comes off the production line defective because of an error in the manufacturing process.
- Contaminated Food Products – The food industry is especially vulnerable to manufacturing defects that lead to contaminated products. For example, a batch of soup might contain metal shards because of a malfunction in the canning process. Food and drink products could contain dangerous levels of harmful chemicals that can cause serious injuries immediately or down the line after repeated exposure.
- Pharmaceutical Medications – Even with strict regulations, the medications we take can suffer from manufacturing defects and impurities. For example, medications that contain the incorrect dosage of their active ingredient could cause severe health consequences for patients who must take a very specific dosage to manage their health. In other cases, impurities in the manufacturing process can contaminate drug batches.
- Defective Tires – Your tires are where the rubber quite literally hits the road. Faulty tires with manufacturing defects such as improper bonding of tire layers can cause blowouts, accidents, and injuries. Just a single malfunctioning machine in the manufacturing process can cause a defect that puts people’s lives in danger.
Manufacturing defects can happen no matter how many quality control processes a company may implement. Because product liability cases are determined on a strict liability basis, it doesn’t matter how many precautions a manufacturer takes in the production process. As long as they put a defective product on the market that causes injuries, they are responsible.
Examples of Products With Marketing Defects
Even if a product is perfectly designed and perfectly manufactured, it can still be considered “defective” if it has inadequate labeling, insufficient instructions, or misleading advertising that fails to properly warn users about the potential risks of using the product.
- Prescription Drug Labeling – Even if a prescription medication is designed and manufactured perfectly, it can have serious side effects and health consequences. It’s critical for consumers to know exactly what they’re getting into when they take drugs and medications, and that includes all side effects and potential interactions with other drugs. Pharmaceutical companies are responsible for labeling, marketing, and advertising their products truthfully, with adequate warnings about potential side effects.
- Insufficient Safety Warnings on Household Products – Everyday household products can still contain hazardous chemicals or components that can be harmful if not used properly. Manufacturers must provide clear and adequate warnings about the potential risks of using their products, even if they may seem “obvious” to some people.
- Misleading Health Supplements – Unfortunately, the health supplement industry is notorious for products that make health claims without enough scientific evidence to back them up. Consumers who rely on these unproven and untested claims may delay getting actual medical treatment, possibly worsening their health in the meantime. Legal actions have been taken against manufacturers for deceptive marketing practices and inadequate warnings about the limitations of their products.
You are not a faceless consumer. You deserve safe products that come with proper warnings and instructions – not with unreasonable dangers that can hurt you or your loved ones. Product designers and manufacturers are responsible for what they put out on the market. If their products end up injuring people, then manufacturers must pay for the harm they’ve caused.
At Sepulveda Sanchez Law, we can help. If you’ve been injured by a defective product, you have legal rights – and you could have legal standing to file a claim. Contact us now to get started with our free consultation. You don’t pay us until we win for you.