This guest post is from Max Cooper on behalf of Injury-Settlement-Guide.com.
If you or someone in your family has been injured by using a product, your first concern is recovering from your injuries. But if you have bills to pay, or if you miss time from work, you may also have financial concerns. In fact, you may be able to recover the costs of your medical treatment or missed work time, or even a larger amount of money. The key is to properly establish your claim, and to act quickly.
If you can demonstrate that the product manufacturer did not exercise what the law calls “reasonable care” in manufacturing the product that injured you, you may have grounds for claiming negligence. For instance, if you fall off your treadmill because the belt didn’t stop moving when you turned the machine off, and break your ankle as a result, you may be able to make a claim that the treadmill manufacturer was negligent.
Strict liability is related to negligence. However, strict liability implies that the product itself is dangerous, rather than claiming that the manufacturer or merchant was negligent. In strict liability cases, you may be able to collect damages even if there is some evidence that the product was not used exactly the way the manufacturer intended.
In making a case for strict liability, you must prove 1) that the item was defective, 2) the defect of the product was responsible for your injury and 3) that the defect made the product unreasonably dangerous. For instance, if your child’s doll had small glass eyes with sharp edges that were easily detached, and your child swallowed them, you may be able to claim that the doll’s manufacturer holds strict liability for your child’s injuries. This is true even if your child tore the doll’s eyes off herself.
Breach of Warranty
Breach of warranty involves broken promises or claims made by companies. As long as you operate the product within the terms of the warranty, the product manufacturer or merchant is responsible for standing by that product. For instance, if your car’s brakes malfunction during the automobile manufacturer’s warranty period, you may be able to make a case for breach of warranty. However, if you were drag racing the car, that might void your claim for breach of warranty.
Misrepresentation involves false claims made by a merchant or manufacturer. Misrepresentation differs from advertising – you would have a hard time enforcing a toothpaste manufacturer’s claim that using the product would enhance your chances of romantic success. However, if the same toothpaste manufacturer claimed that the product would prevent cavities, you may be able to make a case for misrepresentation if you developed new cavities after using the toothpaste.
What to Do
If you have been injured by a product, you must hold on to the product. If you don’t have the defective product in your possession, proving your case will be very difficult, if not impossible. You should also take notes to document what happened, as well as keeping a log of lost wages as a result of missing work. Take photos of the defective product and of your injuries if possible. Keep copies of any hospital or doctor’s bills. Your attorney will want this documentation to help you make your case.
For Further Information
• Defective and Dangerous Consumer Products wiki.legalexaminer.com/help-center/articles/defective-and-dangerous-consumer-products.aspx
• Defective Products and Product Liability Cases robertslawfirm.net/html/product-liability.html
• Legal Issues and Defective and Dangerous Products wiki.legalexaminer.com/help-center/articles/legal-issues-and-defective-and-dangerous-products.aspx
• Strict Liability thefreedictionary.com/Strict+Liability
• What Should You Do If Injured by a Defective Product? sacramento.legalexaminer.com/motorcycle-accidents/what-should-you-do-if-injured-by-a-defective-product-.aspx
• What to Do If You’ve Been Injured robertslawfirm.net/html/what-if-injured.html#defective-product
• What to Do When a Product-Related Accident Happens wiki.legalexaminer.com/help-center/articles/what-to-do-when-a-product-related-accident-happens.aspx
Guest post was contributed by Max Cooper on behalf of Injury-Settlement-Guide.com – Max is a freelance writer and has worked for various legal firms throughout his career. For more information on product liability lawsuits visit the website.