The Law Offices of Charles Boyk are currently accepting cases involving those who were injured physically, emotionally or financially from the use of defective products. If you or a loved one has experienced a loss due to a product that malfunctioned, contact the Law Offices of Charles Boyk for a free legal consultation today.
Every year, thousands of injuries are caused by dangerous and defective products. Typically, these injuries fall under the category of product liability law. Manufacturers or sellers who place a dangerous product in the marketplace can be held liable for any damages suffered by consumers who used their product. Designers, retailers, and anyone in the supply chain can also be held liable.
Examples of Product Liability
Ohio Defective Designs Attorney
Defective designs are flaws in the design of a product that makes it unduly dangerous. Design defects occur when the engineering or design process used by a company to design a product is faulty, resulting in a product that is unnecessarily dangerous. With a design defect, all of the items that come off a company's assembly line have the same defect.
When a product is manufactured improperly, it was not manufactured as designed. There may be nothing wrong with the overall design of the product; but it may have become flawed during assembly. Products that were manufactured improperly are normally much easier to prove because the manufacturer’s own designs can be used to show that the product is defective.
Ohio Marketing Defects Attorney
Marketing defects take place when a product is improperly labeled, comes with unclear or incomplete instructions, and/or does not warn consumers about a products hidden danger.
Specific Instances of Product Liability
Many product liability cases can involve more than one reason for a case.
In 1971, the A.H. Robbins Company released the Dalkon Shield. This Inter-Uterine Device (IUD) was marketed to American women with an enormous campaign. At the height of its popularity, close to 3 million women were using the device. Within a year, A.H. Robbins was receiving complaints of women suffering from pelvic inflammatory disease and tubal infertility, as well as cases of ectopic pregnancies and septic abortions. After twelve Dalkon Shield-using women died, the device was finally pulled off the market in 1974. The fault lay in the design of the device, which left women vulnerable to bacterial infections. In this case, the grounds for product liability fell under both the defective design and marketing defect category, as A.H. Robbins made no attempt to warn users of the potential deadly side-effects.
More recently, Johnson and Johnson released the Ortho-Evra Birth Control Patch in 2002. This patch introduced a much higher level of estrogen into the body than through conventional oral contraceptive methods, and this higher level of the hormone caused defensive clotting mechanisms in some of its users. These clots would travel throughout the body, which put the users at risks for heart attacks and strokes. Subsequently, the New York Post reported in September of 2004 that, according to internal FDA documents, 17 users of the patch had died of heart attacks since 2002. This is another example of both design defect and marketing defect, as there was an almost two year gap between the discovery of problems with the patch and Johnson and Johnson’s change of the warning label on the product.
Product Liability: The Law is on Your Side
If you have been injured by a defective or dangerous consumer product, you may have an easier time recovering compensation for your injuries than those who are injured in other ways. This is because special rules and theories of recovery have been developed in the area of product liability law. In an Ohio court, a person may recover against a manufacturer or seller based on one or both of the following theories: negligence and breach of warranty. The breach of warranty cause of action is particularly important.
In most other types of personal injury law, to hold someone liable for your injuries, you must show that they were negligent, and that their negligence caused your injuries. However, it would be outrageously expensive and incredibly difficult for an individual to show how and where a manufacturer was negligent in manufacturing a particular product. Ohio law makes allowances for this fact. While you do not have to prove a manufacturer’s or seller’s culpability, in order to make a breach of warranty claim you must be able to prove that the product was defective and/or dangerous. You must be able to prove that the product injured you and that you did not substantially alter the condition of the product. Finally, you must prove that you were using the product as it was manufactured to be used.
In a breach of warranty action, a plaintiff can recover damages without actually showing that the manufacturer or seller of a product was negligent. Someone in the business of selling products has just as much responsibility as the manufacturer to ensure that the products are safe, and a breach of warranty action is a way of bringing those who sell dangerous products to account.
If you are injured by a defective product, it is important to gather as much information as soon as possible. Record what happened, get the names and phone numbers of any witnesses, and anything else you feel should be recorded. Recording as much information as possible is incredibly helpful to you and your attorney during the claims process.
When people purchase an item, they are doing so under the assumption that they aren’t putting themselves at personal risk. It is the responsibility of the manufacturers, designers, marketers and retailers to ensure that any product that fills their coffers with money isn’t causing harm to the people that purchase it. If you or a loved one has received an injury due to a bad product, contact Charles Boyk for a free legal consultation today.