Four Factors in Proving Product Liability

Even if a product is designed properly, it can still cause harm to a consumer. Manufacturing defects occur when products are manufactured differently from their intended design. For instance, a pill bottle may be contaminated during processing, or a metal knee replacement can break because of poor manufacturing. When defects cause injuries, manufacturers can be held liable.

Product Defect Overview
US law protects consumers who suffer injuries due to product defects. In this area of law, an injured consumer can file a lawsuit to get compensation for injuries. A successful plaintiff can be compensated for medical bills, lost wages and other types of damages. These suits play a key role in ensuring that items sold in the US and around the world are safe to use.

What Are Manufacturing Defects?
A manufacturing defect is a flaw that was unintentional on the part of a manufacturer. Under the Third Restatement of Torts, the manufacturer’s level of care during the fabrication process is irrelevant. If a product caused injury after it left the factory and was used as intended, the manufacturer is liable for those injuries under the strict liability doctrine.

Challenges in Proving Defects
A manufacturing defect is a tricky thing to prove. For instance, if a car’s brakes don’t work properly and a plaintiff has an accident, the manufacturer is liable for the plaintiff’s injuries. However, there may be contributing factors that make proving the case more difficult. A plaintiff’s slow reaction time could have actually caused the accident, and that possibility could result in reduced or eliminated damages.

The Doctrine of Malfunction
Certain doctrines can help patients prove product liability. In some instances, a plaintiff can use the malfunction doctrine as proof. Under this standard, if an accident’s circumstances point to a defect as a proximate cause, and if a plaintiff can prove that there was no other cause, they can prove causation even in cases where products are destroyed.

When something goes wrong during the manufacturing of a product, it can end up with a dangerous defect. If a person has been injured because of a manufacturing flaw, they may be eligible to recover medical expenses, lost income and damages for pain and suffering. To learn whether there’s a valid case, a person can call a product liability attorney with Dulaney, Lauer & Thomas LLP for a free consultation.

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