Using any product correctly should not result in an injury. When it does, the incident’s shock and pain can initially feel overwhelming. As difficult as navigating the next steps can be, it is essential to contact an Oakville personal injury lawyer.
The legal professional has the product liability experience and knowledge to help you navigate your case. Depending on the nature of your claim and the extent of your injuries, it is possible to win significant compensation. Call the office of Gatti, Keltner, Bienvenu & Montesi, PLC, today to schedule a consultation.
Injuries Commonly Found in Product Liability Cases
Injuries naturally depend on the product in question, its use, and the type of defect it features. Some of the most common products cited in personal injury cases include lawn equipment, children’s toys, electronics, household appliances, motor vehicles, and power tools. Other frequently-mentioned products include medical devices, pharmaceuticals, and childcare items. Injuries that can occur from defective products include:
- Broken bones
- Concussions and other traumatic brain injuries
- Torn muscles
- Puncture wounds
- Cuts and lacerations
- Burn injuries
- Neck, shoulder, and back injuries
- Leg injuries
- Loss of limbs
- Internal bleeding
- Organ damage
- Spinal cord injuries, including paralysis
Individuals who sustain injuries from faulty products can find themselves out of work for weeks while they recover. Some injuries are so severe holding a job is no longer possible. Sadly, there are also product-related accidents that have fatal consequences.
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Types of Defects that Result in Product Liability Claims
Product liability cases are categorized in three ways: design defects, manufacturing defects, and warning defects. If a product has a design defect, it is inherently flawed and unfit for consumer use. Since products are typically produced en masse, any item with a design flaw can potentially injure hundreds or thousands of consumers, if not more.
Manufacturing defects concern products designed correctly yet produced in ways that make them dangerous. Mistakes often occur during the assembly process, such as using the wrong hardware that makes a product unstable.
Warning defects refer to products without sufficient information on using the items safely. Even if a product comes with an “inherent risk,” such as side effects from various medications or small parts potentially choking hazards for children, the manufacturer is legally obligated to warn the consumer. Should a product not feature the appropriate warning(s), the liability case is based on “failure to warn.”
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Product Liability Damages
A product liability lawyer in Oakville frequently requests numerous damages on behalf of their clients. Economic damages, or those that cover expenses relating to the accident, can include:
- Emergency medical care
- Prescription medication
- Physical or occupational therapy
- Lost wages
Non-economic damages, or those that focus on the psychological ramifications of the incident, can include:
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of life enjoyment
- Mental anguish
- Emotional distress
Wrongful Death Cases
If the consumer dies from their injuries, their family can file a wrongful death suit. In addition to the above damages, such as medical care and mental anguish, family members can request compensation for the following:
- Funeral or memorial service costs
- Burial or cremation costs
- Loss of companionship
- Loss of income
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The Typical Defenses in a Product Liability Case
To win this type of personal injury case, a product liability attorney in Oakville, TN, must show that the product was defective and, therefore, “unreasonably dangerous.” They must also show that this dangerous product directly resulted in their client’s injuries, despite the individual using it correctly. The plaintiff did not modify the product in some way that made it hazardous.
The claim falls under “strict liability” rules if an Oakville product liability lawyer can prove these things. Unlike other personal injury claims where the legal professional must prove the defendant’s negligence, strict liability means the plaintiff is not responsible for their injuries and therefore entitled to compensation. Defendants in product liability cases use several defenses to avoid paying plaintiffs what they deserve.
Common product liability defenses include:
Sometimes, a product liability defendant claims they do not owe the plaintiff compensation because the plaintiff misused the product. Had they followed the directions and used the product correctly, they would not have sustained injuries.
Once a product belongs to a consumer and they make modifications, the designer or manufacturer is not liable for any injuries they sustain.
Outside the Statute of Limitations
For any personal injury claim in Tennessee to have merit, it must be filed within one year of the accident. If the claim is filed after the statute of limitations, it is not accepted by the court.
Assumption of Risk
Many products are inherently hazardous such as power tools. The consumer accepted this risk upon purchase and cannot claim damages for injuries if they used it correctly or incorrectly.
Defendants also use Tennessee’s comparative negligence rules to defend themselves. According to this rule, the plaintiff must be 50% or less to blame for their injuries. They cannot claim damages if they are 51% or more to blame because of misuse or any other reason.
Should a plaintiff be 50% or less responsible, that percentage is used to calculate compensation. For example, if a person is 30% to blame for their injuries and requested $25,000 in damages, they will receive $17,500.
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Discuss Your Case with an Oakville Product Liability Attorney Today
If you used a product but sustained injuries through no fault of your own, speak with an Oakville product liability attorney as soon as possible. You should not have to pay for your medical expenses and deal with lost wages because of an inherent manufacturing defect or because the product did not feature sufficient warnings. Compensation helps you recover quickly and hopefully resume your normal daily schedule.
Contact the law firm of Gatti, Keltner, Bienvenu & Montesi, PLC, for dedicated counsel and legal representation. These Memphis-based attorneys are here to help you easily navigate your injury case. The sooner you speak with a product liability attorney in Oakville, the sooner you can work to recover compensation.
Call our office, or submit our contact form today to schedule a free consultation.