Have you been injured by a defective product? If so, you need a product liability lawyer withexperience to take on the manufacturer. Lee Wallace has handled product liability cases for twenty years now, and she has had cases in twenty states, not just in Atlanta, Georgia, but in numerous states around the county. Put herHarvard Law degree to work for you. If you or a loved one have been injured by a defective product, contact Lee Wallace, a former chair of the product liability section of the Georgia Bar. Call or email us now.
Obviously a manufacturer knows far more about its own products than a consumer ever could. For that reason, the law requires manufacturers to take responsibility for the products they make.
If you are not sure whether you have a product liability case, read on. We have some information that may help you figure out.
ON THIS PAGE:
- Was the product that injured me defective? How to tell
- Has the product been recalled? How to find out
- Think you have a product liability case? Take these steps now
- Has this product ever injured someone else? Links to find out
WAS THE PRODUCT THAT INJURED ME DEFECTIVE? HOW TO TELL
Designers and engineers have determined three different categories in which a product can be deemed defective. These categories are titled “design, guard, and warn.”
(1) Design. The product that caused your injury was poorly designed or manufactured.
Manufacturers have a duty to design a safe product and manufacture the product according to the design’s proper specifications. If product is inherently dangerous due to their poor design or became dangerous because the manufacturing process did not follow the established design, the product can be declared defective.
For example, if a grinding wheel is designed with a lack of proper support structure only to break apart during use and a piece strikes the user’s eye, the wheel would be deemed defective due to poor design. On the other hand, if a car’s structural integrity is compromised by a miscalibrated welding machine during manufacturing resulting in a driver’s injury in the event of an accident, the defect would be deemed due to improper manufacturing rather than a design flaw.
(2) Guard. The manufacturer could have include proper safety features in their product, but didn’t.
Manufacturers must make products that are safe when they can, though some products such as power tools have an inherently dangerous nature and must be operated with caution. In the event that it is impossible to make a product 100% safe to use, manufacturers should include certain safety features to reduce the risk of injury.
Take circular saws for example. While these devices must be able to spin a sharp blade fast enough to cut through lumber, certain features such as hand guards and safety interlock devices that automatically shut off the engine when a person lets go of the saw handle can prevent injury and guard against the dangerous nature of the tool.
(3) Warn. The manufacturer failed to properly inform consumers of the dangers of their product.
If a product cannot be made reasonably safe through design or guards, manufacturers must post sufficient and obvious warnings on the product’s packaging and the product itself. These warnings must be accurate and clearly state the potential dangers of use.
For example, volatile household chemicals must clearly state that they can cause death if ingested, rather than simply claiming that it can cause “discomfort.” If a product has a warning label but it is in an easy to miss spot or in tiny print, it can be deemed insufficient. An example of this would be car tires that warn of the risk of blowout in microscopic print on the inside of the wheel. If a reasonable person would not be able to see this warning, it essentially does not exist.
HAS THE PRODUCT BEEN RECALLED? HOW TO FIND OUT
All too often, manufacturers do not recall their defective products. But when a manufacturer does recall a product, you can get important information about what is wrong with the product.
Six federal agencies have banded together to create one central web page where you can search to see whether a product has been recalled by the federal government. The six agencies are:
- United States Coast Guard
- Consumer Product Safety Commission – CPSC
- Environmental Protection Agency – EPA
- Food & Drug Administration – FDA
- National Highway and Traffic Safety Administration – NHTSA
- United States Department of Agriculture — USDA
You also can get specific recall information from the websites of the six agencies.
Consumer product recalls:
Consumer Product Safety Commission – CPSC
Cars and motor vehicles, tire, motor vehicle equipment, and child safety seat recalls:
National Highway and Traffic Safety Administration – NHTSA
Boats and boating equipment safety alerts:
Foods, drugs, medical devices, biolotics (vaccines and blood products), animal feed and drugs, cosmetics, radiation-emitting products:
Food & Drug Administration – FDA
Meat, poultry and processed egg recalls:
United States Department of Agriculture – USDA
Emission related recalls:
Environmental Protection Agency
If you believe you have been injured by a defective product, contact us for a Free Case Review.
THINK YOU HAVE A PRODUCT LIABILITY CASE? TAKE THESE STEPS NOW
If you think you may have a product liability case, you should take several steps immediately:
(1) Preserve the product intact, exactly as it was at the time you were injured.
(2) Do not settle the insurance part of the case yet. You need to examine all of the facts before you settle with some of the defendants.
(3) Contact a reputable lawyer with experience in this area immediately. Consider the Wallace Law Firm, L.L.C. Lee Wallace chaired the product liability section of the Georgia Bar. An honors graduate of Harvard Law School, she has nearly 20 years of experience with legal matters in 20 different states.
HAS THIS PRODUCT EVER INJURED SOMEONE ELSE? LINKS TO FIND OUT
(Workplace Injuries Only)
OSHA accident investigation files
TO FIND OUT MORE ABOUT DEFECTIVE PRODUCTS, CHECK OUT THESE SITES.
(the publisher of Consumers Report)
(American National Standards Institute, purchase required)