Recovery for injuries sustained by consumers as a result of defective products are based on strict liability, negligence, and breach of warranty. The firm is recognized nationally for its products liability litigation involving motor vehicles, aircraft/helicopters, motorcycles, ATVs, toys/juvenile products, medical products, and consumer products. Our attorneys obtained one of the largest product liability verdicts in the country and the highest verdict at the time against Honda of almost $20 million and have successfully litigated numerous cases against Kawasaki and Yamaha. For a complete list of the firm's representative results, go to our Verdicts and Settlements section.
Products liability, like personal injury, falls under Tort Law. There are state statutory laws, and the United States Department of Commerce has instituted a Model Uniform Products Liability Act (MUPLA) for voluntary use the states. But, there are no federal products liability laws.
Products liability law deals with the liability of any party or all parties involved with the manufacture of a product for damages caused by it. Products liability claims can be based on negligence, strict liability, or breach of warranty of fitness depending on where the claim originates. Most of the time, products liability is considered a strict liability offense. This means that the plaintiff only has to prove that there is a defect in the product. Then, the manufacturer or supplier causing the damages is considered to be 100% responsible regardless of any degree of carefulness on their part or any lack of care by the consumer, nullifying any possibility of comparative or contributory negligence.
There are three types of product defects that can incur liability for manufacturers and suppliers: design defects, manufacturing defects, and defects in marketing. Design defects are inherent defects that exist before the product is manufactured. Manufacturing defects occur during the construction or production of the product, and defects in marketing involve improper instructions for safe use or operation of the product and/or failures to warn consumers of latent dangers in the product.
Products defects not only cover tangible products, like an automobile, but also intangibles (e.g., gas, asbestos or other chemical substance), naturals (e.g., pets), real estate (e.g., house or land) and writings (e.g., navigation charts).