Understanding Defective Product Lawsuits: How to Get the Compensation You Deserve
Did you know that manufacturers, retail stores, wholesalers, and other businesses have a responsibility to provide you with safe products? If damages or injuries occur, they can actually be held responsible under the law.
Injuries resulting from defective products do not always result in lawsuits. If you suffer a minor injury because of a defective product, you may be able to receive fair compensation from the manufacturer. Usually, this means dealing with the insurance company of the manufacturer. However, in other situations, this may not be possible and filing a lawsuit is necessary.
Here’s how to know if you have a viable defective product claim and how to receive the compensation you deserve.
Establish the Basis for Your Claim
If you are like most, when you buy a toy for your kids or take medication prescribed by a doctor, you believe it will be safe. Unfortunately, this isn’t always the case.
If injuries or damages occur, you have the right to seek compensation for your injuries. Before seeking compensation, though, you have to ensure you have a valid claim. There are both federal and state laws as well as several legal theories that involve the concept of product liability. For most minor claims, proving liability comes down to proving how the product in question was defective.
There are three basic ways a product can be defective:
- Design defects
- Manufacturing defects
- Marketing defects (for example, failure to warn)
Consider how you were injured. If there was a malfunction with the product, it is not possible to know how or when the defect occurred. However, just the fact the product malfunctioned may be all that is necessary to file a claim.
Seek Medical Attention Immediately
It is crucial to establish a connection between the defective product and your injuries immediately. You can do this by going to an urgent care center or your primary care provider.
Ensure you disclose all of the details of how, where, and when the injury occurred. This means letting everyone who takes part in your care know what happened so they can relate the injuries to the product.
You need medical records that provide a connection between your injuries and the product that is being deemed defective.
Consider the Statute of Limitations
Every state has rules and standards related to various legal actions. The amount of time you have to file the lawsuit is called the Statute of Limitations, and this will vary from one region to another. You must file the lawsuit within the set time period, or will not have the opportunity to after the date has passed.
Usually, the time period for this statute starts when the injury from the defective product occurred.
Let the Manufacturer Know About Your Injury and Claim
If you do not hire an attorney for help with your claim (which isn’t recommended), you should put the product manufacturer on notice. If their contact number is not on the packaging, it can likely be located online.
Contacting the at-fault company is only the initial step you need to take. You can also send a certified letter, but this is not always necessary.
When speaking with a company representative, let them know what happened, what the defect was in the product, and how it injured you. You can also let the person know you are still receiving treatment for your injuries. Take note of the date you called and who you spoke to for future reference.
Hire an Attorney for Advice and Guidance
When it is time to seek compensation for an injury or damages you received because of a defective product, hiring an attorney is a smart move. They can provide advice and guidance related to the situation and ensure you have the needed evidence to minimize issues and give you the highest probability of success.