When someone is hurt because of a defective product, they can file a product liability claim against the company because their actions are the reason the person incurred injuries. But these claims can be difficult without legal aid. If you live in Georgia, Bey & Associates can help. You’ll be in touch with an experienced Atlanta product liability lawyer who wants to fight for your rights and help you get justice.
When we purchase something from a store, we trust the products are safe to use. We rarely think that the product could have a manufacturing error or other issue that would make it dangerous and could possibly cause harm. Drugs can be rushed to the market in favor of making a profit, as opposed to doing every test to make sure they’re safe. Manufacturing errors can mix up labels, or incorrectly display instructions on a box. This negligence can lead to injuries and damages for those that use the products.
Types of Product Liability Claims
Regardless of what the defective product is, its reason for failure can be traced back to some point in its creation and development. The recalled products are typically pulled for at least one of the following three reasons:
This type of defect is the most common cause of product liability claims. A defectively manufactured product is flawed because of an error that occurred while it was being made. This mistake can lead to injury-causing problems that make the item different from others being sold.
It’s likely the lawsuit will be based on the grounds that the original design of the product is safe, but something happened during the manufacturing process that made it unsafe. If a product is found to be unreasonably dangerous and fails to safely perform as intended or in a manner reasonably foreseeable by the maker, it can be deemed the harm outweighs the benefit.
Examples of manufacturing defects include:
- A passenger vehicle missing its brake pads
- A tainted batch of cold medicine containing a poisonous substance
- A child’s toy that’s been wired incorrectly
The second type of product liability category is when a product’s design is inherently dangerous. This is an error that would have occurred prior to the manufacturing process. The claims involve entire lines of products and ignore the fact that the injury-causing product was made perfectly according to the manufacturer’s specifications.
Examples of design defects include:
- A type of sunscreen that fails to protect the skin from ultraviolet rays
- A specific model of car that is apt to rolling over while turning corners or rounding bends at higher speeds
- A table that is designed with unequal leg lengths
Warning or Labeling Defects
The final type of product liability claim can be filed in the event a product was not sold with adequate warnings or instructions detailing proper use. These claims typically involve a product that is dangerous in some way that’s not obvious to consumers or requires the user to exercise extra precautions when using it. This can apply to avoidably and unavoidably unsafe products.
Examples of warning or labeling defects include:
- An allergy medicine that does not include information on its warning labeling regarding possible dangerous side effects when taking it in combination with other commonly taken drugs
- A toxic paint that is sold without adequate instructions for safe use and handling
- An iron that is packaged without sufficient warning concerning the temperatures the steam can reach
Safety Hazards Associated With Faulty Products
Every kind of product, from household appliances to clothes to children’s toys, has to be safe to use. Prior to being placed on the market, products are required by law to be tested. In some cases, however, corporations find ways around this important step. This is one of the ways defective products are released to the public.
Every year, there are a number of products that are recalled by the United States Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC). Not only are they responsible for ensuring consumers are protected from dangerous products, they determine the regulations, laws, and standards that manufacturers are supposed to abide by.
When those federal laws are disregarded, the consequences can be devastating. Defective children’s toys can cause serious harm, like broken bones or burns. Medical equipment that has not been effectively reviewed can result in worsening or new conditions. Faulty auto parts can cause car accidents that result in loss of life. Below you’ll find a compilation of recalled products.
Medical Device Recalls
- Hernia Surgical Mesh Implants. Hernia mesh complications include infection, hernia recurrence, and pain. The mesh can also move or shrink. While the surgical mesh is recalled, there are people who already have the surgical mesh who are experiencing adverse side effects.
- Vyaire Medical AirLife Humidification Chamber & Heated Breathing Circuit Kits. Taken off the market on January 30, 2018, this device was recalled because of a manufacturing error that splits the chamber and causes water to overflow into the patient’s breathing circuit. This poses a serious risk of injury or death.
- Edwards Lifesciences LLC Certitude Delivery System. The device’s molding overflow has an issue that can obstruct blood flow, causing an embolism. Critical organs don’t get the blood they need. The worst-case scenarios include neurologic, cardiac, and gastrointestinal injuries and more.
- Sterilmed Reprocessed Agilis Steerable Introducer Sheath. There’s an improper seal of the sheath hub that prevents blood flow, possibly causing injury or death.
- Physio-Control Inc. Defibrillation Electrodes. This product depicted incorrect instructions for placement on infants. While the mechanical function is fine, the picture doesn’t show the correct use and if someone followed the pictures, the infant could be injured or be at risk of death.
Dangerous Drug Recalls
- Gericare by Kareway Products. This product could possibly have contamination that affects sterility.
- Limbrel by Primus. Patients who took this may have experienced serious side effects, but they are reversible. Effects included elevated liver function that resulted in hospitalization.
- Senna Laxative by Magno-Humphries Laboratories Inc. The company voluntarily recalled the Basic Drugs Brand of Senna Laxatives because the label was incorrect. The drugs weren’t Senna Laxatives, they were Naproxen Sodium. People wouldn’t know they were taking the wrong medication and could potentially have an adverse reaction if the person had other illnesses.
- Nexterone by Baxter. Baxter recalled this drug because it potentially contained a particulate matter that could cause adverse reactions like local vein irritation, allergies, and aggravate existing infections.
- Levofloxacin by AuroMedics Pharma LLC. This drug contains mold that could cause fatal infections for patients.
- LEDVANCE Recessed Canister Light Kits. Dangers include shock and electrocution due to short-circuiting.
- Vornado Air Cribside Space Heater. The motor mount can break and ignite the interior plastic, which can cause burns or a fire.
- Elkay Water Coolers and Bottle Filling Stations. There’s a shock hazard from internal screws breaking and loosening the grounding wire.
- Rockler Murphy Ped Kit. The kits don’t properly secure the wall studs and wall enclosures, which could cause tip-over and entrapment hazards. Children have a higher risk of injury and death.
- Panasonic Flat Screen Television and Swivel Stand. The television’s mounting screws can come loose, which means the television could fall over and cause an injury.
For information on other medical or drug recalls, visit the U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA). Recalls regarding auto parts and vehicles can be found with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). For most other recalls, visit the CPSC’s list.
Product Liability Laws in Georgia
If you’ve been injured or suffered other damages because of a product, our personal injury attorneys can help you file a successful product liability claim, to ensure you receive compensation for what you’ve been through. It’s often helpful to be familiar with what the law requires you prove in order to win your case.
In Georgia, product liability claims can be based on strict liability or negligence. While you don’t have to prove fault, do you need to be able to show the manufacturer who you are suing made the product and the product was defective when it left their control.
In most instances, you will also need to include the following elements in your claim in order to be successful:
You were injured or suffered losses. While a defective product could potentially cause a number of injuries or damages, you’ll need to have experienced an actual medical problem or monetary loss in order to receive compensation. If, for example, your new coffee pot explodes the first time you use it because of a crack in its base, but you manage to get out of the way before sustaining any burns, you will not have a claim because no actual injury or damage occurred.
The product is defective. How easy it is to prove a product’s defectiveness depends on the type of claim you’re making. As we discussed above, you’ll either need to prove there was an error in how the product was made, the product was unreasonably dangerous, or you were not warned of the hazard you experienced.
The defect caused your injury. You must be able to demonstrate the injury you sustained was caused by the defect you’ve identified in the product. This can be fairly easy in some cases, like if the coffee pot we mentioned above actually did give you third-degree burns. In other cases, however, it may not be so easy. This can get particularly difficult in the event of a car accident resulting from a defective auto part because the car’s manufacturer will likely argue the accident resulted from negligence, not a defect.
You were using the product as it was intended. This can be more difficult to prove, but your lawyer can help you show that you were using the product in a way that could reasonably be expected by the manufacturer.
Statute of Limitations
There are time limits in place for filing product liability lawsuits. According to the General Assembly of Georgia, you have two years to file a personal injury claim and four years for property damage claims. The discovery rule states that the time starts when you discovered, or should have discovered, both the injury and the product’s role in causing it.
Your product liability attorney will be able to help you determine how much time you have left to file your lawsuit, so you don’t miss out on compensation that can aid with your recovery.
Protect Your Rights with the Help of an Atlanta Product Liability Lawyer
Companies that manufacture products have a responsibility to inform the public of possible side effects and danger of using their product and taking it off shelves if they receive evidence that their product is causing harm. By the time they do this, people could have already been hurt.
If you or a loved one has been injured because a product was defective or had incorrect packaging, you may be able to get compensation with an Atlanta product liability lawyer from Bey & Associates. We can help you build your case and file your claim, to ensure the negligent entity is held accountable for their error.
We’re dedicated to providing the best legal services to the citizens of Georgia. Our goal is to get you the compensation you deserve so you can have peace of mind and recover from your injuries. Please don’t hesitate to get in touch with us for a free consultation.