Products that enter the marketplace are expected to be safe to use. Unfortunately, it is not uncommon for consumers to suffer injuries from unsafe products.
A hardworking attorney from the area could help you or your loved one hold the product manufacturer liable for your harm. A Bucks County defective products lawyer could review your case to determine who is responsible for the defect and negotiate with the at-fault party for a fair damages award.
How Do Products Become Defective?
There are three common types of product liability claims local attorneys help injured parties file. These claims rely on negligence that resulted in:
- Design defects
- Manufacturing mistakes
- Failure to warn
In a design defect case, the flaws exist from inception, and even following good manufacturing protocols cannot remove the hazard. Plaintiffs pursuing a design defect argument may also need to show that the manufacture could have utilized a safer, alternative design.
When a manufacturing defect occurs, something went wrong during the production process, and quality control measures either were not in place or failed to detect the problem. In these cases, specific batches of a product may pose a risk, while others do not.
Failure to warn claims involve dangers not apparent to the consumer but which they could avoid if notified. The lack of adequate user instructions fall under this category, such as a list of potential side-effects from a medication.
Potential Liable Parties
The manufacturer is not the only party who may hold responsibility for a defective product. Liability may attach to any anyone involved in the process, including:
- Parts suppliers
In Pennsylvania, as in other states, holding these parties accountable does not require proof of negligence or breach of a duty. Instead, Pennsylvania residents injured by hazardous goods may rely on the theory of strict liability.
Strict Liability Claims for a Harmful Product
Under strict liability, defendants’ knowledge or intent becomes irrelevant. Evidence of blame focuses on three facts: the product’s deficiency, that the defect created an unreasonable or unacceptable danger, and the flaw resulted in an injury. While this decreases a plaintiff’s burden of proof, it is still important to hire a lawyer in Bucks County to help with proving a product liability claim.
Many manufacturers and others in the supply chain have a strenuous defense team. They may argue that the claimant caused their injures by substantially altering or misusing the product. They may also assert that the claimant failed to follow the provided directions. Savvy legal representation could effectively prepare for and respond to these attempts to blame the injured party.
What Could Limit a Product Liability Claim?
Under 42 Pennsylvania Consolidated Statutes § 7102, each party must assume responsibility for their part in causing the harm. In other words, the damages an injured person may recoup cannot exceed the percentage of fault assigned to the defendant. If the claimant’s contribution to the harm exceeds 50 percent, they will forfeit all recovery. By hiring a seasoned faulty products lawyer, claimants in Bucks County could plan for these defense strategies and maximize their compensation.
Statute of Limitations
As in almost all states, Pennsylvania has in place time frames within which personal injury plaintiffs must raise their claims or risk losing the opportunity to file suit and seek compensation. With minimal exceptions, 42 P.S. § 5524 requires injured parties to file products liability cases within two years of the harm.
Contact a Bucks County Defective Products Attorney for Guidance
After suffering harm from a dangerous consumer good, you should consider speaking with a Bucks County defective products lawyer at our firm. A dedicated attorney could fight to bring you justice by devising a successful litigation strategy and challenging the defense’s allegations of comparative fault. To learn more, call us today and schedule a case consultation for free.