If you’ve been injured by a defective product, there are certain essential elements that must be proven. It must be proven that the product was defective and that this defect caused an injury. A product defect can be the result of a defective design, a manufacturing defect, or a failure to warn of the hazards of using a product. Just because a product causes an injury doesn’t necessarily mean that the product was defective and the manufacturer or seller is liable.
A product should be designed in a way that is not unreasonably dangerous to those who use it. There are a number of different factors that go into determining whether a product was defectively designed, including:
- The usefulness of the product
- The likelihood that the product will cause injury
- Whether there is a safer alternative design available
- The ability to make the product safer and still keep it functional and reasonably priced
- The degree to which the user of the product was aware of its dangerousness
- The ability of the manufacturer to spread out the cost of a safer design
With a manufacturing defect, the product has been safely designed, but something has occurred during the manufacturing process that deviates from the design and makes the product dangerous. In order to prove a manufacturing defect, it is usually helpful to have the actual product on hand so that it can be examined by an expert. The product will likely be compared to other products in the same line to determine where the defect lies.
Failure to Warn
A product may also be defective because there is a failure by the manufacturer to warn of the possible dangers associated with the use, or foreseeable misuse, of a product. In order to prove a failure to warn defect, it must be shown that the danger was not obvious to the ordinary consumer. A warning must also be adequate and reasonably inform the consumer of the dangers. Factors that play a role in determining whether a warning is adequate include:
- The location of the warning
- Whether the warning uses pictures or written words
- The color of the warning
- Whether the warning is easy to read and understand
An adequate warning is one that allows a consumer to make an informed choice about whether to use a product. A product with no warning, or an inadequate warning, is defective.
Contact an Experienced Attorney
If you’ve been injured by a defective product, you should have an experienced personal injury attorney evaluate your case. At Bonina & Bonina, P.C., we have over 50 years of experience helping injured New Yorkers. Contact us online or call us at 1-888-MEDLAW1 to schedule your free consultation. Home and hospital visits are available. Se habla español.