Being injured from a defective product is just as bad as being injured in an accident: you still need to spend time and energy to recover from the damage done to you and that time typically comes at the expense of income. That’s why it’s only logical that you would look to seek compensation for the damage the product caused.
But defective product claims work differently from accident claims. For starters, there are three different kinds of defective product claims and each covers a different aspect of the product. We’ll look at all three briefly before looking at what it takes to prove a defective product claim. But proving a product was defective requires solid evidence of your claims, which we’ll discuss in more detail below.
What are the Types of Defective Product Claims?
When it comes to defective product claims, there are three ways by which a product can be legally shown to be defective. Selecting the appropriate type of defect is extremely important to winning the case, as each type of defect focuses on different aspects of the product. If you claim that there was a problem with the design but it was actually in the marketing then you’ll be wasting a lot of time trying to prove the wrong thing.
The three types of defective product claims are:
- Design Defects: Design defects arise from the design of the product itself. This type of claim states that the product was poorly designed and poorly tested, the poor testing letting the bad design slip through into the manufacturing process. A lot of old children’s toys were incredibly dangerous because of poor design choices that left them open for a design defect claim.
- Manufacturing Defects: With this claim, you are arguing that the design of the product is acceptable but that something happened during the manufacturing process that made the product dangerous. For example, one of the materials used could fail to withstand the amount of pressure the product is supposed to be under or an ingredient used in the formulation could be toxic when exposed to heat. A number of things that would count as defects could be introduced during the manufacturing process.
- Marketing or Failure to Warn Defects: Marketing, in this case, refers primarily to the packaging of the product and its failure to warn of potential dangers associated with the product. If the product is poisonous when ingested but the packaging doesn’t say so, this would be a failure to warn. While not every possible danger needs to be on the packaging, it isn’t uncommon for manufacturers to fail to warn about every danger they are required to.
How Do You Prove a Defective Product Claim?
Proving a defective product claim isn’t as simple as merely showing that there was a problem with the product. A product can be defective without the company having to pay out money to every customer that was dissatisfied with what they got. In order to prove that a product was defective in a manner that requires the company payout, you must prove the following elements:
- That you were using the product in the manner it was supposed to be used: If you are using bleach to cut your martinis, then the product isn’t defective: you’re just using it wrong. You have to show the court that you used the product how it was intended to be used.
- That the product was defective in the way you are arguing: Your argument is that the product’s defect caused you harm, so you must be able to show that the product is defective in some way. This could be an endless number of things because each product is different.
- That you were injured or suffered by using the product: If you weren’t injured, then there is no case. You must be able to show the court that you suffered because of the product.
- That your injury or suffering was due to the defect in the product: The final link in proving a defective product claim is to tie it all together by showing your personal injury happened because the product was defective.
You must be able to show all four of these key pieces to prove a product defect claim.
What Evidence Do I Need for a Defective Product Claim?
There is a lot of evidence that you and your attorney can gather to make for a compelling defective product claim. For example, evidence that will help your case is:
- The Product Itself: since you’ll need to show how it is defective the easiest way is to use the product.
- Medical Bills: Showing that you’re injured is easy when you have the medical bills to prove what you are claiming. Additionally, you could ask your doctor about providing a professional note about your injuries.
- Photos: Photos are useful for several things, such as when a product will not last long enough to be shown to the court. Additionally, photos can and should be used to document your injuries so the severity can be shown rather than just conveyed via written medical record.
- Labels and Marketing Materials: These are important for proving a failure to warn claim. They can be useful in other cases as well, so it’s a good idea to keep any marketing materials relevant to your case.
Where Can I Get Help with My Defective Product Claim?
If you are looking to press a claim over a defective product then Matthew Norris wants to help. With our experienced staff, we stand ready to help fight for the retribution and recompense that you deserve. Not only that, but we understand that identifying and making known defective elements in the products we buy only helps to make for a safer future so others don’t need to suffer the injuries you have.
Reach out to us when you’re ready for help with your defective product claim.