You or a family member used a product and got badly hurt. Now you are considering suing. What can you do?
Before you dive into your case or contact an attorney, it’s a good idea to know what you are getting yourself into. Here is what you need to know about product liability law.
What Is Product Liability Law?
Product Liability is when someone gets hurt due to a product that is defective or dangerous despite using it the way that it was supposed to. The law is designed to find out who was responsible for the incident and have them possibly pay reparations to the person who was hurt or to the family if it turned into something fatal.
Who Is Responsible for a Defective Item?
This is what a whole case can hinge on – proving that there was something that one or more of the following was responsible for putting out a defective product:
- The manufacturer who made the product
- The manufacturer who made a certain defective component
- The people who assembled the product
- The wholesaler who sold the product
- The store that sold the product.
In some states, including California, more than one of the above can be called into court if it is something that was caused by more than one failure in the chain.
What Types of Defects Are There?
When it comes to product defects, it can boil down to three types:
- Design defects – This is because whoever designed it made a mistake and the product became dangerous.
- Manufacturing defects – This happens when the product is made or assembled.
- Marketing defects – The instructions that came with the product may have been poorly written or left out important information.
How Long Do I Have To File?
The deadline to file varies from state to state, but it is usually around two years. After that, the statute of limitations usually expires, so you need to get that in before, otherwise you risk not being able to get anything. Reliving it may feel traumatic, but it can feel worse knowing that you can’t get any kind of reparations because you waited.
Talk to an attorney as soon as possible. They will be able to walk you through the incident and take a look at the product – keep everything that came with the product if you can, including packaging and instruction manuals. Then you can go pursue justice.