Consumers often have a subconscious belief that products purchased from popular stores and online retailers are safe. Unfortunately, this is not always the case. Whether the problem is due to defective design, manufacturing, labeling or storage, consumer goods of all types can suffer from dangerous and potentially fatal hidden flaws.
If you or a loved one was seriously injured by a dangerous, defective product, financial compensation may be available. To discuss bringing a defective product lawsuit for injuries, speak with with an experienced product defect attorney in Philadelphia. Call the Wieand Law Firm for a free and confidential legal consultation at (215) 666-7777. We handle product liability claims in Pennsylvania and New Jersey.
What is Product Liability Law in Pennsylvania and New Jersey?
Pennsylvania and New Jersey have consumer protection laws that protect our communities from defective products. The term “product liability” refers to the liability of product manufacturers, sellers, and/or designers for injuries or death resulting from the use of their products. This includes:
- Consumer products that are meant for household use.
- Industrial products, such as industrial saws and meat cutters, which are meant for use by businesses and contractors.
In general, injured workers are precluded from suing their employers for workplace accidents, being covered instead by workers’ compensation. However, if the workplace injury was caused by a third party, such as the manufacturer of a defective forklift or other industrial product, the injured employee may be able to file a defective product lawsuit.
Almost all businesses and manufacturers that produce and sell products carry liability insurance to cover product liability claims that result in injury to a consumer. The product liability lawyers Philadelphia counts on at the Wieand Law Firm can help you take legal action when you have been injured by a defective product.
Types of Product Liability Claims Our Personal Injury Law Firm Handles
Common products that may cause a catastrophic injury or wrongful death often include toys, baby cribs, ladders, and some cosmetic products. Even recreational playground equipment and sports equipment pose a risk if defective. In recent years, notable product recalls have included automobiles, peanut butter, and many children’s toys. A product defect attorney helps injured victims achieve financial recovery for their losses through a defective product lawsuit.
With millions of products sold every single day, it is impossible to supply a complete list of every possible product defect that may occur. However, some examples of defective product claims that are subject to present litigation or are being investigated include:
- Automotive Parts and Systems
- Brake Systems
- Floor Mats
- Ignition Switches
- Baby and Children’s Products
- Cosmetic Products
- Baby Powder (Talcum Powder)
- Hair Products / Hair Relaxers
- Skin Cream
- Dangerous Medications and Prescription Drugs
- Mirena Contraception
- Proton Pump Inhibitors
- Testosterone Gel/Cream
- Yaz/Yasmin Birth Control
- Furniture and Upholstery
- Collapsing Chairs
- Flammable Upholstery
- Home Appliances and Electronics
- Air Conditioners
- Heating Blankets
- Lithium-Ion Batteries
- Space Heaters
- Washing Machines
- Industrial Equipment
- Kitchen Appliances
- Deep Fryers
- Pressure Cookers
- Stoves and Broilers
- Toasters and Toaster Ovens
- Medical Devices
- Hip Implants
- Knee Implants
- Surgical Screws
- Transvaginal Mesh
- Tools and Hardware
- Faulty Wiring
- Nail Guns
- Power Drills
- Step Stools
- 16-Passenger Vans
- Riding Lawnmowers
If you’ve been injured by these or other defective products you have the right to seek legal representation. Call a Pennsylvania or New Jersey product defect attorney at the Wieand Law Firm for a free consultation about a defective product lawsuit.
Product Liability Law and Strict Liability
Products liability deals with the legal liability in which a manufacturer or distributor of a defective product may be held liable for injuries to the consumer from the product’s use. In these cases, liable parties may be involved in an aspect of the product’s chain of distribution. This means that the manufacturer, the distributors and the retailer may all have liability for consumer injuries.
There is no federal legislation for products liability; the laws vary from state to state. The United States Department of Commerce created the Model Uniform Products Liability Act (MUPLA) to create a standard products liability law, but it has not been widely adopted or recognized. A product defect attorney can help consumers understand how regulations impact their ability to file a defective product lawsuit.
In Pennsylvania and New Jersey, product liability claims follow the theory of strict liability. This means that the manufacturers and sellers are generally liable for consumer injuries caused by the products they produced or sold regardless of their efforts to exercise reasonable care. Stated another way, a manufacturer or seller may be liable for defective product injuries without the need to prove that they were negligent. The product liability lawyers Philadelphia relies on are knowledgeable of product liability laws in Pennsylvania and New Jersey and are dedicated to helping consumers who have suffered injuries from a defective product.
Types of Product Liability
Defective product lawsuits typically fall into one of three categories. For each of these claims you must prove that product was defective and that the defect cause your injury.
Defectively Manufactured Products
A claim for a defectively manufactured product alleges that the product was flawed because of an error while making the product. Examples of manufacturing defects could include:
- Medication that was contaminated with a poisonous substance
- A ceiling fan that was wired incorrectly.
- An airbag that lacks the correct deployment mechanism
Defectively Designed Products
Defective design claims revolve around an inherent flaw in the product design that created an unreasonable danger. Examples of defectively designed products could include:
- A 16-passenger van that is top heavy and prone to rollover accidents
- An electric blanket on the lowest setting that heats to a temperature causing serious burns
- A power saw that is missing a safety guard to protect the consumer’s hand
Marketing defects involve misleading, incorrect, or inadequate instructions or warnings. Examples of marketing defects could include:
- Steaming, hot coffee at a fast-food restaurant that lacks a safety warning on the cup
- A prescription medication that fails to warn the consumer of side effects
Consult with a product defect attorney at the Wieand Law Firm to understand if you may have a claim for a defective product lawsuit.
What is Needed to Prove a Product Liability Case?
Consider working with a product defect attorney to give your case the best chance of success. The product liability lawyers Philadelphia relies on at the Wieand Law Firm have obtained significant jury verdicts and settlements for their clients. They can help to prove the elements needed to a successful defective product lawsuit. These elements are:
- The victims suffered physical harm from using or consuming the product
- The product was defective when it was sold to the consumer
- The defendant distributed or sold the product
- The product’s defect made it unreasonably dangerous to the plaintiff
- The product’s defect caused the plaintiff’s injuries
- The product was not substantially altered after it was distributed or sold to the plaintiff
Common Defenses to Products Liability Claims
Manufactures and distributors have legal teams prepared to fight claims from injured consumers in defective product cases. Therefore, you need a product defect attorney on your side that understands that defenses these companies often mount to combat your claim. Some common defenses include:
- That the plaintiff knew about the risk and assumed the risk by using the product
- The plaintiff misused the product in a way it wasn’t designed or intended
- The plaintiff’s injury was from a commonly known danger of the product
- The defendant complied with federal laws and regulations during manufacturing and is not liable under state products liability law
The defendants in these claims will sometimes use tests such as a risk-utility test or a consumer expectation test to help defend their claim.
To give your defective product lawsuit the best chance of success, hire the product liability lawyers Philadelphia relies on for these types of cases. A product defect attorney at the Wieand Law Firm can be the crucial difference in proving your case and receiving compensation for your injuries.
Compensation for Injuries and Wrongful Death Caused by Dangerous Products
If you were injured by a dangerous product compensation may be available for a wide range of losses, expenses, and various personal hardships, known as “damages.” For instance, compensatory damages compensate the victim for his or her losses. Depending on the circumstances, punitive damages – which can be awarded in cases involving malice or recklessness – may also be available.
The details of each person’s situation must be evaluated on a case-by-case basis. By working with product liability lawyers Philadelphia trusts, injury victims may recover compensation for:
- Diminished Earning Capacity (Disability)
- Loss of Consortium
- Loss of Income
- Loss of Services
- Medical Bills
- Pain and Suffering
- Permanent Scarring and Disfigurement
How Much Can I Win in a Product Liability Case?
Every case is different, and the amount your case may be worth will depend on the specific set of circumstances surrounding your claim. Jury Verdict Research data from Thomson Reuters shows that in 2020, the average personal injury jury award in a product liability case was over $7 million, with a median result of nearly $4 million.
Keep in mind, that these number reflect jury verdicts. Most defective product lawsuits do not go all the way to trial. Past awards may not reflect the value of your potential claim. Speak with the product liability lawyers Philadelphia depends on at the Wieand Law Firm to see how much your case may be worth.
Steps to Take After You Have Been Injured by a Defective Product
If you are ever injured by a household or industrial product, the first priority is to seek medical care. Your next step should be contacting the product liability lawyers Philadelphia counts on at the Wieand Law Firm for immediate legal assistance.
Before you contact a lawyer, try to answer the following questions. Knowing this information will help your attorney evaluate and investigate your injury claim with greater efficiency.
- What was the date of the accident? This is important information for any type of product liability case, be it a defective medical device, pharmaceutical drug, or power tool. The reason an attorney will want to know the date of the accident is because the date is vital to determining whether there is enough time left on the statute of limitations to adequately investigate the case. In all cases you should act quickly to preserve your rights. If the statute of limitations is close to expiring (running out of time) there may not be time to thoroughly investigate your case. For this reason, it is important to consult with an attorney as soon as possible after being injured by a hazardous product or device.
- Did you Preserve the Product? In many cases, it is critical to preserve the defective product in its present form and condition. The product is often key evidence which experts will inspect to prove your case. In addition to preserving the product itself, you should also try to preserve the packaging and receipts.
- What specific product caused the injury? Before contacting an attorney, try to determine the specific product, as well as the manufacturer of the product. Try to determine the make, model, and identifying numbers or other information which will help identify the product. This information will allow your attorney to begin an investigation as to whether the item is defective. For an up-to-date list of specific products that have been recalled, including their brand names, the nature of the defect, and other information, you can also refer to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), which publishes current information about hazardous products on its website. Simply click the “Recalls” button at the top of the page, then select the information you are interested in reading about.
- Where was the item purchased? In some cases, the law allows injury victims to file product liability lawsuits against sellers or retailers of a defective product. These defendants may have an impact on your case’s jurisdiction or venue (where the case is heard), which may influence an attorney’s decision to take the case. Further, whether the product was purchased from a retail store or second-hand at a yard sale is important information that your attorney will want to know about.
- What is your injury? This may sound obvious, but a defective product lawyer will want to know what your injury is, who you were treated by, when you were treated, with what, for how long, and what future treatment is anticipated. This information is important for your attorney to know before negotiating a settlement.
Will It Cost Me Anything to Hire Product Liability Lawyers Philadelphia Trusts at the Wieand Law Firm?
We believe that everyone deserves access to qualified legal counsel. That’s why our attorneys with under a contingency fee agreement. This means that we only earn compensation when we win money for your defective product lawsuit. Our attorneys are motivated to do their very best to get you the best possible result for your claim. Call today to speak with a product defect attorney about your potential claim.
Choosing Product Liability Lawyers Philadelphia Trusts
When selecting a product defect attorney, it can be difficult to choose who may be best suited to represent your interests. Consider the following factors:
- Experience: The attorneys at the Wieand Law Firm are experienced litigators with years of experience representing victims in personal injury cases
- Client Relationships: Your product defect attorney should keep you updated with your case status and your legal options each step of the way.
- Resources: The Wieand Law firm works with a network of resources to pursue your case, including connections with product liability experts who will be crucial in proving your case
- Results: The Wieand Law Firm is proud of the results obtained for deserving clients through both settlements and trial verdicts. See our RESULTS page for yourself.
Contact an Experienced Product Defect Attorney for Help
When a company sells a dangerous consumer or commercial product – and in some cases, even works to conceal the hazard from the public – it should be held responsible for the harm and suffering it causes for innocent consumers and workers. The product liability lawyers Philadelphia counts on at the Wieand Law Firm are committed to pursuing justice for members of our community who have been injured by defective products in Pennsylvania and New Jersey. When facility a catastrophic injury, the Wieand Law Firm is here to help. Call us today at (215) 666-7777.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
“Brent is very conscientious and professional. I highly recommend him if you need an attorney. ”