There are hundreds of product recalls in the United States every year. In the month of February 2015 alone, there were 22 product recalls published by the Consumer Product Safety Commission. While recalls are meant to protect consumers, the fact is that not all recalls are issued in time. When a product leads to consumer harm, product liability laws hold the manufacturer of that product liable for damages.
What constitutes consumer harm?
According to Ohio Code 2307.71 – Product Liability Definitions, consumer harm refers to “death, physical injury to person, serious emotional distress, or physical damage to property other than the product in question.” As such, it’s important to note that a consumer cannot file a product liability claim simply because the product malfunctioned and was a waste of money. Instead, actual harm must be suffered, even if the harm is not actually physical.
Types of Product Liability Suits
Nearly any product can be involved in a product liability suit assuming it causes consumer harm. Examples of products that may cause harm include the following.
- Clothing or robes (flammability or choking hazards for children)
- Electrical appliances
- Toys sets and games
- Children’s cribs or high chairs
- Cleaning products
- Unsafe helmets
- Medicines and medical devices
- Power tools and machines
- Car parts and accessories
Product liability suits fall into one of three categories, regardless of the product type. Types of product liability suits include defective design, defective manufacture or defective label/labeling error. Defective design means that the product was designed with an inherent danger. Defective manufacture means that the product’s design was safe for consumer use, but something went wrong in the manufacturing process to cause a hazard. And the third — a labeling error — means that the product would be safe for consumer use, but the label failed to provide proper instructions or hazard information.
What to Do After a Product Harms You
Knowing what course of action to take directly following an injury caused by a defective product may not be obvious. The first thing that you should do is to seek medical care for your injuries. Save all copies of medical receipts and reports — they will be essential to recover damages.
Next, discontinue using the dangerous product, but don’t get rid of it entirely. It may serve as evidence in a civil action against the product’s manufacturer.
The next thing that you should do is report your unsafe product to the Consumer Product Safety Commission using their website. Then, you should call an attorney. Because the statute of limitations for filing a claim for damages is two years in Ohio, this final step should be done as quickly as possible following your injury. An attorney can help you file a claim for damages, which can help to pay for all of your economic and noneconomic losses as a result of your injury.
Get in Touch With a Worthington Product Liability Lawyer Today
Filing an unsafe product report to the Consumer Product Safety Commission, collecting medical evidence and proving a product manufacturer’s liability on your own can be intimidating and overwhelming. At Bressman Law, our Worthington product liability lawyers can do all of that alongside you and provide the support and legal backing you need throughout the entirety of the claims process. Unsafe products pose a serious hazard to consumers, resulting in injuries ranging from electrocutions to choking to amputations and more. To stand up for your legal rights when you or your child has been harmed, call us today at 1-877-538-1116.