Were you or a family member injured as a result of a faulty product? Are you unsure of who is responsible for your resulting injuries? Regan Zambri Long is here to answer your questions about strict product liability and what that means for your personal injury claim.
For exemplary legal representation in your product liability claim, call Regan Zambri Long at 202-960-4596. Founding partner Victor E. Long is a board-certified civil trial lawyer who has secured millions of dollars in product liability settlements for injured victims and their families and can do the same for you.
What Is Strict Product Liability?
Under strict product liability, a manufacturer or seller of a defective product, medical device, etc. can be held liable for the injuries of victims using that product even if there was no intent to harm.
This means that if you or a loved one were injured because of a faulty product, you can seek compensation for your injuries and related losses without proving the manufacturer was intentionally negligent. You do still, however, have to prove that the product caused you harm because it was defective and that the defect made the product dangerous.
While this is unlike other forms of personal injury law, strict liability was created in part to ensure that manufacturers were diligent in the release of products to the public while also making it easier for victims to seek compensation from those manufacturers or sellers for injuries caused by those harmful products, devices, etc.
Types of Product Defects in Strict Product Liability Claims
While many issues may arise causing a product to be unsafe and cause harm to consumers, the following are the most common product defects that occur in product liability claims:
What Are the Elements of a Cause Of Action in Strict Product Liability?
Strict product liability claims are some of the more challenging types of product liability cases as the victim needs to prove that the conduct of the manufacturer or seller was below the relevant standard of care. However, as products are made cheaper and cheaper, determining what that relevant standard of care is is complicated.
To do so, your attorney will need experts in the field who can testify on what consumers should expect of product manufacturers. Finding an expert witness can be difficult to do on your own, so connecting with a strict product liability attorney as soon as you can will be imperative to the success of your case.
In addition, there are elements of a cause of action that need to be established in a strict product liability claim. They are:
Again, the plaintiff does not need to prove that the manufacturer was negligent or had the intent to harm, just that the product was defective and it caused injuries.
What Is Absolute Liability vs Strict Liability?
The United States Consumer Product Safety Commission estimates that more than nine percent of all personal injury cases are related to a defective product. While similar, there are key differences between absolute and strict liability defective product offenses.
In a strict liability claim, the plaintiff needs to only prove that there was a defect in the product that caused the injury–not that there was an intention to do harm or an intentional defect. In these cases, the defendant can prove that they did practice their due diligence and is not to blame for the injuries.
This is unlike absolute liability where the plaintiff again only has to prove that the defect existed and not prove intent. But in defense, they cannot utilize due diligence, accident, etc. to mitigate fault.
When the defect in the product occurred will ultimately determine who can be held liable in a strict product liability claim. The following parties may be held liable for your injuries from a faulty product:
Once your legal team has determined who is at fault for the injuries sustained by the faulty product, you can take legal action to recover damages.
In a strict product liability claim, our injury attorneys can help you recover the following damages:
The negligence laws in your jurisdiction can impact the damages you recover. There are two forms of negligence, contributory negligence, and comparative negligence.
Under contributory negligence, if the injured party contributed at all to the accident, even only the slightest amount, they cannot recover compensation. Under comparative negligence, you can still collect compensation for your injuries even if you have contributed to the injury to a certain amount.
Because of these differences, you need to know what your jurisdiction follows.
The statute of limitations for product liability claims also depends on the jurisdiction you are in. In Washington, DC, there is a three-year statute of limitation for product liability cases which begins on the date you discovered that you were injured by a product.
In Maryland, you also have three years to file a product liability claim from the date of your injury. In Virginia, you have two years from the accident to file a claim.
To win a strict product liability case, you will need to determine where the product default occurred to establish liability. From there, your trusted product liability lawyers at Regan Zambri Long will go after the at-fault party to secure the compensation you need to move forward.
Our team will determine if the design, manufacturing, or marketing of the product caused the defect or misinformation which then caused you to become injured. Further, there may be opportunities to seek compensation via consumer protection statutes. The following are consumer protection statutes in Washington, DC, Maryland, and Virginia.
Washington, DC: Consumer Protection Procedures Act protects consumers from deceptive and unfair practices by merchants.
Maryland: Consumer Protection Act protects consumers from unfair, abusive, or deceptive trade practices.
Virginia: Consumer Protection Act promotes fair and ethical standards of dealings between suppliers and the consumer.
Further, we can help you navigate a variety of product liability claims including those of:
If you or someone you love has been injured in Washington DC, Maryland, or Virginia, as a result of a defective product, you may be entitled to financial compensation for your losses.
At Regan Zambri Long, our highly regarded product liability attorney Victor Long has won multimillion-dollar settlements for victims of defective products including a $4.2 million settlement for a 6-year-old, who was injured by defective playground equipment; and a $3.8 million settlement for a 5-year-old who was injured in a fire caused by a defective home appliance, resulting in changes in warning labels for consumers.
Not all personal injury lawyers are equipped to handle the intricacies of strict product liability claims–but we are. When a defective product causes severe injury, know that you don’t have to handle it alone. We know that the stakes are high–let us help.
For a no-obligation, free consultation with the strict product liability lawyers of Regan Zambri Long, call us at 202-960-4596 or connect with us online.