As consumers, we trust that the products we use every day will not jeopardize our safety. However, some products are released to market with dangerous defects, often resulting in serious bodily injury. Between missed work, medical expenses, and the need for continuous medical care, an injured person may have a long recovery ahead. Injuries suffered at the expense of a defective product can certainly put your life on hold.
At Bertram & Graf, L.L.C., we believe that manufacturers of defective products have a responsibility to ensure consumers of those products are not harmed. While there are numerous types of product defects, they generally fall into one of three categories, manufacturing defects, design defects, and misleading or inadequate marketing.
A manufacturing defect is a type of defect that occurs during the manufacturing process. For example, a car seat’s frame is built with cracks in the metal, causing it to fail during a collision, anyone injured as a direct result may have the basis to file a product liability claim.
However, not all injuries will constitute a claim. If a manufacturing defect in any way caused an injury to somebody, then that injured person may have a valid product liability claim and valid personal injury claim based on a manufacturing defect. Typically, the product must have been used as intended during the time of the accident.
Another type of defect that may be linked to an injury is called a design defect. These injury cases stem from products that contain a design flaw. Unlike manufacturing defects, where the final unit differs in some way from intended design (such as a cracked frame), these defects derive from a hazard present in the products fundamental design.
Entire product lines are typically affected and the danger exists even though the product is being used exactly as intended. Examples of design defects include, but are not limited to: a tire which may explode while inflated at the recommended PSI, bicycle seats which break, unable to support the weight of a person who it was designed for, or an airbag which fails to inflate upon a serious impact. Again, to have a valid claim, the victim must have been injured as a direct result of the products defect.
Another type of product liability claim that an injured person may allege is called “failure to warn.” Manufacturers of products, such as medications and medical devices, have a duty to ensure they are communicating all warnings to consumers. This enables consumers to make an informed decision about whether or not to take a particular medication or to have a particular medical device implanted in the body.
When such warnings are not communicated, and a person is injured, he or she may be able to pursue a failure to warn claim. This type of product liability claim typically involves hidden dangers that, while present in a product’s design, may not be immediately apparent to the consumer or that consumer’s doctor.
If you have been injured by a defective product, Bertram & Graf, L.L.C. is here to help. Our Missouri product liability lawyers can help you understand if you have a claim, what type of case you have, and how to overcome the legal obstacles which may lie ahead. Below, we look at these three types of claims in more detail.
Determining who is liable for your injury can be a difficult and complex process, however, doing so is extremely important because identifying all responsible parties increases your chances of getting a full recovery.
A defective product can typically be traced back to three places:
If the defect can be traced back to the manufacturer, it doesn't mean the initial product was harmful, but due to a failure to meet standards or provide quality parts, the manufacturer caused the product to become unsafe. With many products, different manufacturers could have been used for various parts of the whole product.
Through our law firm's investigation, we can determine which manufacturer is to blame for either the part that harmed you, or the whole product. Even a foreign manufacturer can still be held liable by our experienced product liability lawyers. In most product liability cases, there is more than one defendant being held at fault. The retailer who sold the defective drug or product can also be held responsible. Even if you did not buy the product directly, but received it from a friend for instance, the retailer can still be found liable.
The same is true for a distributor or wholesaler. These companies work as the "middlemen" of the product industry, providing retailers and others with drugs and products. At Bertram & Graf, L.L.C., we have skilled litigators and investigators who can uncover the distributing company of the harmful product in order to name them in your product liability lawsuit.
Product Liability Cases We Handle
Manufacturers of defective products should be held responsible when their products cause injuries or death to others. When dealing with debilitating injuries caused by a defective product, you need a product liability attorney with a proven track record of success standing by your side and advocating for your rights and interests.
When you need a Missouri Product Liability Attorney with substantial experience and proven track record of success, do not hesitate to give our firm a call. From reviewing your case and gathering evidence to pursing litigation, our Kansas City product liability attorneys are ready to fight for the justice you deserve.