Personal injury lawsuits arising from defective or dangerous products are known as product liability cases. Product manufacturers, manufacturers of component parts, distributors, wholesalers, and even the retail store that sold the product to the consumer can be held responsible for a defective product that causes an injury under certain circumstances. Just about any product that causes injury may lead to a product liability claim. Anything from dangerous food products or drugs, to healthcare devices, motor vehicles, firearms, power tools, lawnmowers, and appliances can result in injuries to consumers. Fortunately, when you are hurt by one of these items, a Rochester defective product lawyer from Lacy Katzen LLP can help.
Defective Product Lawyer | Representing Injured Consumers in NYS
Were you hurt due to a defective product? If so, you’re most likely seeking compensation to help you deal with the physical, financial, and emotional damages you’ve incurred as a result. If so, a Rochester personal injury lawyer from our legal team is here to help.
Common Types of Defective Consumer Products
Every year, countless products are recalled because of defects that could harm consumers. Some of the most common types include:
- Children’s Toys: Lead paint or small parts that can be ingested are recurrent issues.
- Household Appliances: Faulty wiring can lead to fires, or appliances might malfunction in ways that pose physical dangers.
- Automobiles: From airbag failures to brake issues, cars sometimes have defects that can lead to major accidents.
- Electronics: Batteries catching fire or electric shocks from misuse are not unheard of.
- Defective Medical Devices
Medical devices are meant to improve health or save lives. However, a defect can have the opposite effect. Some historically problematic medical devices include:
- Hip Implants: Some have been known to cause metal poisoning or are prone to early failure.
- Pacemakers: Malfunctioning units can have dire consequences for heart patients.
- Transvaginal Mesh: Used in pelvic repair surgeries, but some have caused severe complications.
- Breast Implants: Issues have ranged from leakage leading to health problems to associations with certain types of cancer.
- Grounds for Filing a Product Liability Claim
In New York, a victim can pursue a product liability claim based on three primary grounds:
- Design Defect: This refers to an inherent flaw in a product’s design that makes it unsafe. The product would have been dangerous even if manufactured perfectly.
- Manufacturing Defect: Even if a product’s design is sound, it can become harmful if there is an error or oversight during its production or assembly.
- Failure to Warn: This occurs when manufacturers or distributors don’t provide adequate warnings about a product’s potential risks. It’s not just about clearly labeling hazards; instructions must also guide consumers on the safe use of the product.
Statute of Limitations in New York
In New York, the statute of limitations for product liability claims is generally three years from the date of the injury. It’s essential to act quickly. If you wait longer than this period, you may be barred from pursuing a claim, no matter how valid.
However, there are nuances. For instance, if a defect in a product only becomes apparent years after its use, the “discovery rule” might apply, which starts the clock from the moment the injury is discovered, or should have reasonably been discovered.
Key Steps in Pursuing a Claim
The three key steps of any personal injury claim are as follows:
- Document the Incident: Preserve the product in its current state and gather any manuals, receipts, or packaging.
- Seek Medical Attention: Even if injuries seem minor initially, consult a medical professional. They can document your injuries, which can be crucial for your claim.
- Consult a Personal Injury Attorney: Defective product claims can be complex. An attorney can guide you on the best course of action, gather necessary evidence, and represent you in court if needed.
Contact a New York Defective Product Lawyer Today
Defective product claims serve to hold manufacturers and distributors accountable for releasing harmful products into the marketplace. That said, while navigating a product liability claim can be intricate, especially with New York’s specific regulations and limitations, you don’t have to go it alone. A skilled defective product lawyer can be your advocate, fighting for your rights and ensuring you receive the justice and compensation you deserve. Contact Lacy Katzen LLP today for a free initial consultation.