ELMIRA PRODUCT LIABILITY LAWYER WORKING WITH PEOPLE WHO HAVE BEEN INJURED BY DANGEROUS OR DEFECTIVE PRODUCTS
Product liability refers to actions for injuries suffered as the result of a defective product. This includes actions against product designers, manufacturers, or distributors. Some examples include defective seat belts, defective airbags, faulty tires and wheels, dangerous baby toys, medical devices, and industrial machinery. To recover damages, the injured person must prove that an unreasonably dangerous condition or defect existed in the product at the time the product left the manufacturer’s control and that the condition was a proximate cause of the individual’s injury.
A product is unreasonably dangerous or defective if it fails to perform in a manner reasonably to be expected in light of its nature and intended function. Products can be defective and unreasonably dangerous in any of three ways. First, the product may contain a manufacturing flaw. Second, the product may be defectively designed. Third, the product may have an information defect such as inadequate warnings, directions, or instructions.
WHAT TO DO AFTER BEING INJURED BY A PRODUCT
First, and perhaps most importantly, you should seek immediate medical attention. If you go to the emergency room, you should schedule a follow-up appointment with your primary care physician. Ask them to thoroughly document your injuries and make sure your medical records identify the cause of your injuries. In addition, you want to be sure to follow the treatment plan recommended by your doctor. In the event that you need to pursue a claim, failure to follow the treatment recommended by your doctor will be used as evidence against you that your injuries weren’t as severe as you claimed or that you weren’t really injured at all.
You also need to preserve the evidence surrounding your injury. Do not throw away the product that caused your injury, even if it’s broken. If you still have it, be sure to keep the original packaging as well as any instructions, owner’s manuals, or other documents that came with the product. All of this could be very important evidence in building your case should you need to pursue a claim.
You also need to keep all of your medical bills and medical records associated with your injuries. Keep them organized and in a safe place so that you will be able to easily produce them when you need them. You should keep copies of any paperwork you receive related to your injury.
If your injuries or subsequent treatment require you to miss work, you need to document the days or hours that you lost.
Our Elmira product liability lawyer team also recommends that you keep your own documentation regarding your injuries and subsequent recovery. This can include photographing your injuries while they heal as well as keeping notes regarding difficulties you may have in your daily life such as the inability to sleep or the constant pain you are suffering.
Lastly, you should talk to an Elmira product liability lawyer as soon as possible. At Proudfoot Law Firm we can determine whether you have a product liability claim and help you gather the evidence you need. Together we can build your case so that you can focus on your recovery.
I WAS INJURED BY A PRODUCT THAT HAS NOT BEEN RECALLED. CAN A LAWYER STILL HELP?
New York law imposes strict liability upon manufacturers, distributors, and retailers of dangerous or defective products, which means that you do not need to prove the manufacturer or anyone else involved in the sale of the product knew or should have known that the product was defective. Instead, you must prove the product was unreasonably dangerous when used as it was intended.
As a result, you can still pursue a product liability claim even if the product has not been recalled. In fact, many manufacturers and retailers do not voluntarily issue a recall until they are facing multiple separate claims. Your product liability claim may not only result in compensation for your injuries but might also protect others from being injured by the same product.
Conversely, the fact that the product was recalled does not necessarily mean you have a product liability claim or that you are entitled to compensation. While the recall will help prove that the product is actually defective, you will still need to prove that you were using the product as intended and that it caused your injuries. It is also important to note that recalls are often issued for one particular model but not for other very similar models of the same product made by the same manufacturer. It is important to make sure that the recall applies to your specific product.
Product liability cases are one of the most complex types of personal injury claims and can be very difficult for non-lawyers to successfully pursue. Whether or not a recall has been issued, an Elmira product liability lawyer can review your case and determine whether you have a claim.
DETERMINING LIABILITY FOR DANGEROUS AND DEFECTIVE PRODUCTS
In the context of product liability, “defective” does not mean “broken.” Instead, it means that the product is inherently dangerous when used as it is intended. As mentioned above, there are three ways that products can be considered defective.
- Design defects – when the product is defective by virtue of the way it was designed.
- Manufacturing defects – when the product is safe by design but errors in manufacturing the product render it unsafe.
- Failure to warn – when the product does not come with adequate instructions regarding proper use or fails to disclose known hazards.
Determining how the product that caused you injury is defective isn’t always easy. In some cases, it may be defective in more than one way. This is one of the reasons why you should speak with an experienced Elmira product liability lawyer if you have been injured by a dangerous product.
DID DEFECTIVE AUTOMOBILE PARTS CONTRIBUTE TO YOUR ACCIDENT OR MAKE YOUR INJURIES WORSE?
Car accidents are one of the most common types of personal injury claims that lawyers handle. Most of these cases are the result of the other driver’s negligence, but it is not uncommon for defective automobile parts to either contribute to the accident or to the injuries suffered by the victim.
For example, your accident may have been caused by the other driver making an illegal lane change. You could have possibly avoided the accident, but defective tires on your vehicle caused you to lose control when you swerved. An experienced Elmira product liability lawyer will be able to pursue a claim against both the other driver and the manufacturer of the defective tires.
TYPES OF AUTOMOTIVE PRODUCT DEFECTS
Some of the most commonly defective automotive products:
- Brakes and braking systems
- Steering systems
- Accelerators and fuel systems
- Seats and booster seats
A sudden failure of even a seemingly insignificant part can have serious consequences. For example, a fuel leak could pose a serious fire risk, especially in an accident. If you suspect that a defective automotive part is at least partially to blame for your accident or injuries, an Elmira product liability lawyer can help you thoroughly investigate your claim.
Attorney Steve Proudfoot and the defective product lawyers at Proudfoot Law Firm have handled numerous product liability cases including lawsuits against Sears (ladder), Wal-Mart (light), Black & Decker (cleaner), Hawker-Dayton (punch press machine), and Remington Rand (defective gun safety), to name a few. Elmira Product Liability Lawyer Proudfoot recovered a structured settlement worth $675,000 for an infant injured by a defective light purchased from Wal-Mart. He also recovered a structured settlement worth $1.25 million for a man injured by a punch press machine at work.
If you or someone you know has been injured, you may be entitled to monetary compensation. Call for a FREE consultation today.