Something you never want to do is give a gift that causes a problem. Unfortunately, many consumers are unaware of product liability, and they have no idea how to find out if an item is safe or has been recalled. Consumers have a right to expect that manufacturers produce goods that are both safe and effective, as long as they are used in the way the manufacturer intended them to be used. What happens when you use a product in the correct manner but you or someone else is severely injured as a result?
Elements of a Product Liability Claim
Products Fail. They cause problems and injuries every day. In many instances, it is because the user did not read the directions or didn’t pay attention to them. Alternatively, the product or item may not have been used properly. Manufacturers have certain responsibilities where safety and effectiveness are concerned; however, consumers also have certain responsibilities to use items as they are meant to be used. Consequently, product liability claims must meet certain criteria before they can be considered worthy of pursuit.
There needs to be an obvious loss. If you are pursuing a claim, you need to show you have incurred injury or monetary loss by using the product. You will also need to show the product had defects in manufacturing or design, or the manufacturer should have known the item could cause harm and failed to warn consumers.
In addition to incurring a loss and showing the product is defective in some way, you need to prove the injury was caused by the defective product, and you were using the product according to the manufacturer’s instructions or in a way that would be considered reasonable.
Checking for Recalls
When a manufacturer realizes there is a problem with a product, they can voluntarily make a recall, or, if enough people have a problem with the product, it will be recalled by a government agency, depending on what it is. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration recalls cars. The FDA does recall food and drugs. The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission does other product recalls.
It is important to stay on top of product recalls, particularly where kids’ toys are concerned, and with products geared for kids. The media does keep people informed about the big recalls, but you can subscribe to alert systems so that you can stay informed across the board. This holiday season, be sure the gifts you give don’t give headaches to the recipients.
When you or a loved one has been in an accident or incident and incurred personal injury, it is important to get competent legal assistance to help you recoup your losses. You will find exemplary, caring legal representation with the attorneys at Frohlich, Gordon & Beason, P.A. We are the attorneys who care. Our offices are located in Port Charlotte, North Port, and Englewood. We bring excellent legal expertise to the people of Southwest Florida. Contact us if you have a personal injury case.