For the most part, products available for purchase in Pennsylvania stories are safe to use so long as consumers follow included instructions and take appropriate safety precautions. Unfortunately, this is not always the case, resulting in many product recalls over the years.
The prospect of filing a civil suit against a large manufacturing company may seem daunting, but a Montgomery County defective products lawyer could serve as a powerful ally. By working with you to gather evidence of negligence and demonstrate the damages you suffered, a dedicated personal injury attorney may be able to help you recover suitable compensation for all your injuries and losses.
Defining Product Liability in Montgomery County
The perspective of Pennsylvania courts regarding harmful products has shifted significantly over time. Under the current case law applicable in Montgomery County, there are three primary ways in which a company could be held liable for a defect in one of their products.
If a mistake occurred while a product was assembled that made it unreasonably dangerous or nonfunctional, a Montgomery County product liability attorney could file suit for damages caused by this manufacturing defect. Likewise, if a product was flawed because it did not contain appropriate instructions for use or warnings about potential dangers, the civil case would be a marketing defect, also known as a failure to warn.
In Pennsylvania, things get a little more complicated when it comes to design defects, or problems with a product’s fundamental design. Based on previous legal precedent, state courts depend on two standards to determine whether a product’s design was defective.
The consumer expectations standard asks the question of whether a reasonable consumer would consider the product in question to be less dangerous than it actually was, while the risk-utility standard considers whether the product’s intended function and inherent risk of use outweighs the injuries the plaintiff suffered. If a product is found to be unreasonably dangerous and defective based on these standards, a case based on a design defect may proceed.
Potential Limiting Factors for Recovery
Plaintiffs pursuing defective products cases in Montgomery County must take care to mitigate any allegations of comparative fault made against them. If a court believes that a person who acted responsibly could have avoided some or all of the injuries the plaintiff suffered, Pennsylvania Consolidated Statutes Title 42, §7102 allows the court to reduce their recoverable compensation by their percentage of fault, or bar them from recovery altogether if they are more than 50 percent at fault.
Furthermore, most product liability cases are subject to the statute of limitations set out in 42 Pa. C.S. §5524, which sets a filing deadline of two years from the date an injury occurred. If a plaintiff in Montgomery County—or the defective products lawyer representing them—does not file suit within this deadline, they may be unable to recover any compensation due to their case being time-barred.
Consult with a Montgomery County Defective Products Attorney Today
No one expects the products they buy to be inherently unsafe to use, but unfortunately, products with harmful defects do exist. If you were injured by an unsafe product, it may be wise for you to consider your legal options for pursuing compensation.
A qualified Montgomery County defective products lawyer could guide you through every step of your claim, from initial filing to its eventual resolution in or out of court. To learn more about what may be possible in your situation, call today.