Orlando Products Liability Lawyers - Paul Knopf Bigger
Consumers rightfully assume that manufacturers put only safe products on the market. Nevertheless, defective or inherently dangerous products make their way to unsuspecting users. People injured by dangerous or defective products deserve accountability and compensation from manufacturers and other companies responsible for bringing those products to market.
If you’ve been hurt because of a dangerous or defective product, turn to an Orlando product liability attorney from Paul Knopf Bigger to pursue compensation for your injuries and losses. Our legal team works hard to make a difference in the lives of our clients and make society safer by holding unscrupulous companies accountable. Contact our office today for a free consultation with a product liability lawyer in Orlando.
What Does Products Liability Mean?
Product liability is a legal principle allowing consumers harmed by dangerous or defective products to seek compensation for their injuries. A person injured by a product defect can file a claim against the product’s manufacturer, retailer, or other parties.
Most product liability claims are based on theories of strict liability, breach of warranty, or negligence. Under strict liability, an injury victim may not need to prove that the product defect occurred due to the manufacturer’s negligence. Instead, strict liability holds manufacturers accountable whenever their defective products injure people.
An injured person can also claim negligence against a manufacturer or retailer. For instance, they might allege that a manufacturer failed to conduct adequate safety testing for their product.
What Are Common Examples of Defective Products?
Some categories of products are more likely to be defective or pose unreasonable dangers to users. Examples of common defective products include:
- Vehicles and auto parts, including airbags, tires, brakes, and transmissions
- Medical devices, such as artificial joints, meshes, and CPAP/BiPAP machines
- Food and beverage products, including baby food and infant formula
- Infant products, including car seats, cribs, and strollers
- Cosmetics and personal care products, such as hair relaxers and talcum powder
- Tools and equipment, such as saws or lawnmowers
- Household appliances
What Are the Different Kinds of Defective Products Liability Claims?
If you’ve suffered injuries because of a dangerous or defective product, you can pursue compensation through a product liability claim. The three most common types of product defects alleged in claims are as follows:
- Design Defect – A design defect claim alleges that the specifications of a product rendered it inherently dangerous for its intended uses. Design defects will affect all units that share the same design.
- Manufacturing Defect – A manufacturing defect claim alleges that some error or mistake occurred during the manufacturing or assembly process, resulting in the product not meeting specifications and becoming dangerous to use.
- Failure to Warn – Also called a marketing or informational defect, a failure to warn claim alleges that a product did not come with sufficient instructions to inform a user how to use a product safely or that the product failed to come with sufficient warnings about the inherent dangers or risks of the product.
Who Is Liable If I Am Injured or Damaged by a Defective Product?
Under product liability law, any party in the “chain of commerce” may bear liability for injuries caused by a dangerous or defective product. The chain of commerce includes any party involved in bringing a product to market. Examples of parties in the chain of commerce that could be liable in a product liability case include:
- The product’s manufacturer
- Suppliers of materials or components used in the manufacture or assembly of the final product
- Wholesalers and distributors
What If a Family Member Dies as a Result of a Defective Product?
If you’ve had a family member die because of a dangerous or defective product, your family may have the right to pursue compensation in a wrongful death claim, including for:
- Loss of your loved one’s support and services, including the loss of their future support at present value
- Loss of a deceased spouse’s companionship and protection
- Mental pain and suffering over the loss of a spouse, parent, or child
- Loss of a deceased parent’s companionship, instruction, or guidance
- The decedent’s final medical and funeral/burial expenses
- Loss of the decedent’s earnings between their injury and death and the loss of future accumulations that the decedent’s estate would have experienced had they lived
Remember that the statute of limitations on wrongful death claims gives your family only two years to file a product liability lawsuit against a manufacturer if a defective or dangerous product caused your loved one’s death. Thus, speaking to an attorney immediately is crucial to protecting your right to file a wrongful death lawsuit.
What Compensation Can I Recover for Defective Product Injuries?
If a defective product injured you, you could seek compensation for financial and personal losses resulting from your injuries. Let an Orlando product liability attorney from Paul Knopf Bigger help you pursue financial relief, including money for the following:
- Costs of medical treatment, including hospitalizations, surgeries, doctor’s visits, diagnostic tests, medications, mobility equipment, and physical therapy
- Long-term care expenses if your injuries result in permanent disabilities
- Lost wages if you cannot work or need to transfer to a lower-paying, part-time, or light-duty position
- Loss of future earning capacity if your injuries result in permanent impairment that prevents you from being gainfully employed
- Physical pain and suffering
- Emotional distress, including depression, anxiety, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
- Loss of enjoyment or quality of life due to disabilities, permanent scarring, disfigurement, or reduced life expectancy
How Long Do I Have to File a Defective Products Liability Claim in Florida?
Under Florida’s statute of limitations, you have only two years to file a product liability lawsuit after suffering injuries due to a defective product or discovering that a defective product harmed you. If you file your lawsuit after the statutory deadline, the court likely will dismiss your case. If so, you could lose your right to seek compensation in civil court for your injuries and other losses.
Furthermore, you must file your product liability lawsuit within the statute of repose regardless of when your injury occurred or if you discovered the injury. Under the statute of repose, an injured party cannot file a lawsuit more than 12 years after the sale of a product to its first consumer. However, if the product’s manufacturer warrants that the product has an expected useful life longer than 10 years, the injured party may not file a lawsuit after the expiration of the product’s useful life or 12 years, whichever occurs first.
Contact a defective product lawyer as soon as possible to determine how much time you have to file your product liability lawsuit and ensure you file on time.
What You Should Do if a Defective Product Hurts You
If you’ve suffered injuries due to a defective or dangerous product, you can take steps to protect your right to pursue compensation through a product liability claim. You should do the following:
- Seek immediate medical treatment to have your injuries diagnosed and treated. Follow your doctor’s treatment plan, and keep all follow-up appointments.
- Keep the product that hurt you, if safe to do so, or take photos of the product and the accident scene.
- Gather bills, invoices, and receipts of expenses related to your injuries and copies of your pay stubs or income statements if you miss work due to your injuries.
- Start a diary or journal to document the healing process, including the pain, emotional distress, and difficulties with daily activities you experience.
Finally, contact an Orlando product liability attorney to get help seeking the compensation and justice you deserve.
Benefits of Hiring an Orlando Products Liability Law Firm
If a dangerous product has injured you, your priority should be treating your injuries and returning to everyday life. Hiring an Orlando product liability law firm allows you the time and energy to heal from your physical and emotional injuries.
Let an attorney from Paul Knopf Bigger can handle all the details of preparing and pursuing your legal claims. You will benefit from hiring an Orlando product liability lawyer from our law firm because we will:
- Investigate the defective product and gather evidence that proves the product’s defect and how it injured you
- Document your injuries and losses, including future losses you will incur, to help you pursue maximum compensation
- Hire experts in manufacturing, design, medicine, and other relevant fields for compelling testimony
- Communicate with company representatives, insurance adjusters, defense attorneys, and other parties on your behalf
- Help you navigate the civil court system if you need to file a lawsuit and represent you at trial, if necessary