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Product Defect Cases Can Change the World

I have been doing product liability cases since 1985.  The thing to understand about a defective product case is that the product is on trial, not human conduct.  Pennsylvania follows the Restatement (Second) of Torts, Section 402A.  Under Pennsylvania Law, someone who sells any product in a defective condition unreasonably dangerous to the user or consumer or to his or her property is subject to liability for physical harm caused to the ultimate user or consumer, or to his property, if the seller is engaged in the business of selling such a product, and the product is expected to and does reach the user or consumer without a substantial change in the condition in which it is sold.  This is also known as strict liability. 

Since 1966, the law of products liability has been consistent with its mandate that a manufacturer is the guantor of its product.  The manufacturer, or other distributor or seller, may be found liable for all the harm caused by defects in the product regardless of the fact that it may have used all due care in designing or manufacturing the product.  The law thus shifts the loss to the party more able to bear it.  The law seeks to place liability without fault upon a product designer/manufacturer/seller to assure that products placed in the stream of commerce are safe for their intended use.  Generally, product liability cases require direct evidence of a product's defective condition, be it in its design, manufacture or assembly. A product may also be deemed defective if it lacks adequate warnings or instructions necessary for the safe use of the product.  In short, a seller must provide with the product every element necessary to make it safe to use.

Across the globe, one of the most compelling product issues involves furniture and flat screen TV tipover onto children causing them serious injury or death.  I recently handled such a case involving youth furniture (a little girl's chest of drawers) sold by a major US chain store and manufactured in China through a Southern US company.  I proved that the product was defective and a factual cause of the child's serious injury.  As a result of the case, safety precautions in terms of warnings and an anti-tipover kit were overhauled and became the standard.  The child received a significant settlement.

If you or someone you know is injured from a product at home, work or anywhere, you must seek legal counsel immediately.  The product must be secured and examined.  If shown to be defective and the cause of injury, you may be entitled to substantial compensation.  Along the way, you may effect change in safety requirements or warnings for the product to protect others from its danger.  Otherwise put, through a product defect case, you can change your altered world and the world around us.

I stand ready to serve you and to hopefully help you surmount every difficult thing that confronts you due to harm from a defective and dangerous product.

 

 

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Gregory R. Gifford
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