Product Liability Law deals with everyday, or even special use products that are made to help us in our homes, or at our workplaces. If one of those products is designed to function in a specific manner, or if it’s reasonably believed that it may be used for a different purpose, and that design fails, thus causing an injury (i.e., damages), there may be a valid lawsuit to recover for such an injury. This could be a manufacturing defect, a poor design choice, or a vague or improper warning label.
For all personal injury cases that proceed on a negligence theory, there are four road markers to prove up a case.
For example, in a product liability case it would look like this. A manufacturer had a duty of care to the end line user of a product. A breach occurred in that duty (e.g., poor design, faulty manufacturing process, or perhaps the label wasn’t accurate, etc.). Because of that breach, an injury occurred, and such an injury was foreseeable. An award of damages is appropriate because the injury is recoverable.
The other avenue for recovery is a strict liability theory, which means that any seller, manufacturer, or business in the chain of distribution may be found responsible if a product harms someone. The standard under Hunt v. Blasius, 74 Ill. 2d 203, 210 (1978) establishes that 1.) the injury to the person resulted from a condition or defect of the product manufactured or sold by the defendant, 2.) that the condition or defect was an unreasonably dangerous one, and 3.) that the condition or defect existed at the time the product left the manufacturer’s control.
Under either avenue of a lawsuit, the plaintiff (i.e., the injured party) still must prove that the product caused the injury, and that it was defective. There are marketing or distribution defects in which proper care is not given to warn consumers of how a certain product may function and lead to harm. There are manufacturing defects in which a mistake may be made in the manufacturing process, resulting in a product that does not function as originally designed. Alternatively, the manufacturing fit and finish may not operate as required, which puts the product into the stream of commerce unlike how it was designed. For example, if someone purchases a ladder with improperly mounted joints to expand, someone could be on the ladder and, if the joint fails, fall and be injured. Finally, there are design defects in which something in the original design was unknown and could fail, thus leading to an injury. There was a large case in North Carolina many years ago in which a pool drain system could not auto off or release suction after it was engaged. Many pools took on the drain during construction, which, in some cases, led to children being trapped and stuck at the bottom of a pool, thus leading to numerous wrongful death lawsuits against the manufacturing company and the pool designers.
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If you or a loved one has been injured by a product and you want a lawyer who will fight for your interests and recovery both in and out of the courtroom, call us for a confidential, compassionate, in-depth, free, and, most importantly, thorough consultation with a Rockford Personal Injury Lawyer about products liability injury case in Rockford, Belvidere, Freeport, Rochelle, Oregon, Loves Park, Byron, Machesney Park, Roscoe, Rockton, or elsewhere in the State of Illinois, call or text message us at (815) 391-0089, or e-mail us 24/7/365. We offer in-office consultations, and routinely make visits to clients’ homes, hospital rooms, nursing homes, and other off-site locations to make retaining our services as easy as possible./p>