Nearly every day, you hear of some product being recalled due to a flaw in design, a defective part or harmful ingredient. Cars, baby strollers, food items: these are just a few of the things recalled due to safety concerns. Unfortunately, these problems are often not spotted until someone is harmed by a product. In some instances, the damage is done by years of using a commonly purchased product such as Johnson & Johnson baby powder, which is now associated with causing ovarian cancer and mesothelioma. Perhaps you’ve been injured by a malfunctioning vehicle or a contaminated salad. If so, you do have options. A personal injury lawsuit may be able to help you financially If you have been harmed by a defective product.
A recallcan be initiated by the manufacturer or the government. If your car has been recalled due to safety concerns, you will receive an individual notice in the mail. The manufacturer will also announce it publicly, and you’ll be able to find the information online. In the case of other items that cannot be traced specifically to you, public announcements will be made, and stores will often post notices as well. Still, the onus is on you to remain informed.
When a product recall is issued, you’ll be asked to take one of several actions. You might be asked to return the item for repair, replacement, or a refund. In the case of food, you’ll be asked to throw out the item. Despite the best efforts of manufacturers, some items may remain in use, causing harm to the owners.
Currently, manufacturing giant Johnson and Johnson is battling thousands of lawsuits based on the discovery of asbestos in their baby powder, which is suspected to have caused ovarian cancer and mesothelioma (a cancer specifically associated with asbestos) in a number of victims. Although Johnson and Johnson is mounting an aggressive defense, it has lost several of these cases, including one in July 2018 that awarded 4.7 billion to 22 ovarian cancer victims and their families. That particular judgment, along with others, is currently being appealed. One of Johnson & Johnson’s talc suppliers, Imerys Talc America, has filed for bankruptcy due to these lawsuits and the massive cost of mounting a defense.
In 2014, ToyotaMotor Company settled lawsuits that arose from a faulty accelerator pedal design. Drivers would find their cars accelerating on their own when the pedal stuck, causing a number of accidents and fatalities. Toyota made a settlement of 1.2 billion for the gas pedal issues and another defects, essentially conceding that they were to blame for these injuries.
Product Liability Law
You will need an experienced personal injury attorney in order to prove your defective product liabilityclaim. To win your case, you generally need to prove that you were injured or suffered financial loss; the product was defective; the defect caused your injury or illness, and you used the product correctly. If even one of these elements is not true, you will not be able to prove your liability claim.
Injuries and Damage
Experts warn that almost being injured or almost suffering damages is not a valid basis for a claim. Your gas pedal may have stuck and caused you to almost hit a pedestrian, but if no one was injured and your car suffered no damage, you do not have a claim.
You also have to show that the product was defective. Manufacturing errors may be easiest to prove. If something was cracked or otherwise put together incorrectly, you can visually demonstrate that reality. Sometimes design defects are to blame, but you must show that the product is “unreasonably dangerous.” For instance, a crib would be unreasonably dangerous if it has slats placed far enough apart to trap a baby’s head. Your case will also be strengthened if you can prove that you were not warned of the dangers and that you couldn’t be expected to recognize the problem on your own.
Defect Caused Injury
You also must prove that the defect caused the injuries. In the case of the Johnson and Johnson Baby Powder, the defense has claimed that asbestos in the powder did not cause the victims’ ovarian cancer.
Proper Product Use
Proving your case also means proving you were using the product as it was intended. Suppose you were using a blow dryer to melt your frozen pipes. If a fire resulted from that scenario, you would not be able to blame the product since you were using it improperly.
These lawsuits can be complicated, so you need an experienced personal injury lawyer in order to successfully pursue legal relief.
Schmidt Law Group
If you are an Arizona resident, you find help for your product liability case at the respected Schmidt Law Group. For decades, these attorneys have fought to protect your rights when you’ve been injured or suffered damages at the hands of someone else. You should not have to worry about being harmed by items you purchase at the grocery store or from another retailer. Buying a car or a personal grooming item should not lead to life-threatening problems. At Schmidt Law Group, they understand this issue and have the experience to get you an equitable settlement.
Schmidt Law offers you a free case evaluationso that you can understand the strength of your claim before any action is filed. They also do not take any money for accepting your case. Plus, you will never pay them a penny if they do not get a settlement for you. Often, people who have been injured by defective products feel helpless. Schmidt Law Group works hard to put you back in control. For more information on your product liability claim, contact them today.