The law surrounding product liability is complex. Generally, it is based on a duty of care. A manufacturer has a duty to design a reasonably safe product. Moreover, when a distributor places an inherently dangerous product (such as anything explosive or prescription medicines) into the channels of commerce, it has a duty to adequately warn of the danger and the duty to instruct as to its proper use.
A clear example of a hidden defect would be the recent recall from Mattel of toys made in China. The danger of the lead paint used on the toys was concealed from the buyer. Liability for any injuries would fall on the manufacturer (in China, hard to sue); the distributor (also Chinese); and the seller, Mattel. Mattel is a U.S. Company that sold a defective product that can cause serious brain damage in children who naturally chew on toys. As such, it could be held solely liable for all such damages as a consequence of its failure to inspect and test unsafe toys.
Our product alerts page has examples of medicines that were either not fully tested or the doctors and public were not given reasonable notice of the dangers of their use.
Sometimes a product is properly manufactured, but the design is faulty because it fails to provide guards or other safety devices to protect against even an obvious danger, if the danger is great. Examples we have litigated are poorly designed guards on dangerous machinery or equipment such as chain saws, power saws, printing presses and lawnmowers.
Legal issues such as “strict liability,” “warranty,” and “maintenance” are found within the area of product liability. Product liability law is an area of the law that requires a great deal of experience and specialized knowledge on the part of even the most outstanding attorney.
Strict liability occurs when there is a failure to warn of potential dangers that a user would not have recognized but the manufacturer knew or should have known the product presented a danger even if used properly. Examples we have handled are toxic and damaging fumes from household products that were odorless and the public received no warning they existed.
Accordingly, the best advice that can be given to the public, if they have been injured directly or indirectly by a product of any kind, is to seek a Jacksonville attorney with experience as the analysis of a products case requires legal skills of the highest order.
Searching online for a personal injury lawyer to represent your airbag accident claim? Due to recent reports out of Washington D.C., Harrell & Harrell has assigned an attorney to work with accident victims related to the Takata Airbag Explosions that may impact car and truck accidents where the statutes of limitations had originally expired. Click makes & models link to check for affected vehicles. As in all our cases, there is no fee for such a consultation.
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