When individuals are harmed, injured or killed by an unsafe, or defective, product, they may have a cause of action against the manufacturer, supplier, distributor or retailer of that product. This area of law is known as Product Liability.
According to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), deaths, injuries and property damage from consumer product incidents costs more than $700 billion each year. Most of these injuries could be avoided if the distributor or manufacturer of these products took additional steps to ensure the safety of its consumers.
In the United States, the claims most commonly associated with product liability are negligence, strict liability, breach of warranty and various consumer protection claims. The majority of product liability laws are determined at the state level and vary widely from state to state. Each type of product liability claim requires different elements to be proven to present a successful claim.
A products liability claim is usually based on a design defect, a manufacturing defect, a failure to warn or a combination of the three and most often affects the following industries:
- Consumer Goods