From your favorite appliance to the prescription drugs you take and the vehicle you drive, you depend on being able to safely use an array of products every day. When companies fail to manufacture these products with proper care or to warn the public of their inherent dangers, they can cause serious injuries and even deaths.
Being injured by a defective product is frightening. Now you’re in pain and facing rapidly-accumulating medical bills and other expenses. The Philadelphia product liability lawyers of Baratta Law, LLC have helped hundreds of families in our community navigate these types of cases, and they’re prepared to review your potential claim today.
The Three Main Types of Philadelphia Products Liability Claims
The cause of each defective product injury is as different as each individual. However, there are three main categories in which they can be placed when defects have resulted in personal injury lawsuits:
These defective products have flaws due to errors in manufacturing processes, such as poisonous substances leaking into foods or medicines. This can cause illness, various cancers, or even death. Automobile parts are particularly vulnerable to this type of defect and can result in a serious car or trucking accident.
In these cases, plaintiffs and their lawyers must prove that the manufactured defects of the product or device at issue directly resulted in the injuries they’ve suffered. For example, if a motorcycle crash is caused by a defect in the manufacturing of the handlebars, victims must have solid evidence that the accident was caused by the error and not by their own poor steering abilities.
Defects in the Designs of Products
As opposed to errors in manufacturing, these defects arise from goods and products that are deemed to have been inherently dangerous from their initial production. Examples include electrical issues in the design of a line of cars or electronic cigarettes, which can result in an explosion and cause serious injuries like horrific burns.
Again, your claim must be supported by evidence that your injuries resulted directly from the defective design of a product and not your own negligence or carelessness.
Failure to Provide Adequate Warning or Instruction
When a product is marketed and sold, people have a reasonable expectation that manufacturing companies will apply a designation of warning if a product is inherently dangerous, and that adequate instruction will be provided for safe use. The failure to meet this duty of care may obligate powerful manufacturers to pay injured victims for their damages.
In these marketing defects, there must be evidence that a victim wasn’t properly warned or instructed in the use of a product because of how it was labeled or otherwise advertised. Gathering this information can be tedious and consume both time and money, and that’s part of why the representation of a dedicated attorney is so important.
Regardless of the cause of your injuries, lawyers with years of experience in these practice areas are skilled in the collection of evidence and the establishment of liability. The office of Baratta Law, LLC has a long history of service to victims of dangerous products. We’re here to help ensure accountability falls where it belongs and that our clients receive the settlements they deserve.
How Can Defective Products Lawyers Help Establish Who’s Responsible for My Injuries?
In some product liability cases, it can be unclear whether a manufacturer, a retailer, wholesaler, or other parties entirely should be obligated to pay your damages. For example, one case involving a large online retailer recently helped uphold a precedent in the Pennsylvania laws governing product liability claims. These state that such parties cannot be held strictly liable for an injury.
Insurance companies may challenge issues of liability and are often reluctant to offer reasonable settlements, so attorneys must sometimes litigate these claims in court. A judge will evaluate and render decisions on the facts presented in these cases, so the tenacity of a lawyer who will fully investigate your claim and fight for your best interests is crucial to a successful outcome.
The attorneys and office staff of Baratta Law, LLC are experienced in determining the responsible parties and holding them accountable for the injuries suffered. Using liability timelines, witness statements, client biographies, and focus groups, our lawyers have a reputation for attention to the details of a claim and consistent communication with their clients.
The Statute of Limitations on Philadelphia Product Liability Claims
Generally, the two-year filing deadline for claims involving personal injuries applies to product liability cases in Pennsylvania. This means you have two years from the date you suffered the injuries to file a claim to be compensated for your damages.
Some states, such as ours, also employ a twelve-year statute of repose doctrine. This applies specifically to defective real estate improvements and allows plaintiffs twelve years from the date construction was completed to file a claim for personal injury, property damage, or wrongful death.
The complexity of these cases can present a challenge and many more questions than answers, at times. One of the first steps victims can take toward their financial recoveries is speaking with an experienced legal professional. Baratta Law, LLC is committed to spending the time and resources needed to win justice for our clients, and we’re standing by to hear and believe in your potential claim.
Possible Defenses to a Product Liability Claim in Pennsylvania
When insurance companies need to assemble a defense to a claim for damages suffered in the reasonable operation of a defective product, they can get creative. Some strategies commonly employed by a products liability defendant’s legal representation may include:
- The claim was made outside the statute of limitations
- No duty of care was owed to the consumer
- Victim’s misuse resulted in undue risks
- User’s modification of goods caused a defect
- The consumer assumed the risk of an inherently dangerous product
- Negligence or fault was shared with the victim
A skilled attorney like the trusted experts at Baratta Law, LLC can help their clients navigate any defense other parties raise and guide their cases to favorable outcomes.
Frequently Asked Questions about Philadelphia Product Liability
A free, no-obligation consultation is the best way to begin understanding more about your specific situation and exploring your options under the law. However, a few of the questions our product liability clients often have are answered here:
What damages or compensation am I entitled to for my injuries?
Though the amounts victims are awarded through settlements or verdicts are dependent upon the total costs of their medical treatment and other facts of a case, defective products plaintiffs are typically eligible to be compensated similarly to victims of other personal injuries.
These include compensation for economic losses due to medical bills, lost wages from hours you would’ve worked, and reduced income earning potential. In addition, noneconomic damages such as pain and suffering, or punitive damages intended to punish the wrongdoer, may be awarded.
Is there a cap on damages in Pennsylvania?
Except in lawsuits where the Commonwealth is the defendant, there is no cap on the damages that can be awarded in Pennsylvania products liability cases.
Can modified comparative negligence affect my settlement?
Under Pennsylvania’s modified comparative negligence doctrine, recoveries are possible when victims are 50 percent or less to blame for their injuries. This means that, even if you share up to half the fault, you can still recover financial compensation. Settlements may be reduced proportionate to your share of the blame, however, so it’s important to have an advocate on your side in negotiations.
Speak with a Trusted Philadelphia Product Liability Lawyer about Your Potential Claim
When you or a family member has been seriously injured by a defective product, you’ve already suffered enough. The costs of medical treatment and the emotional toll these injuries take on victims add up quickly, but they shouldn’t be your responsibility to pay.
Take the first steps toward holding the correct people accountable and being compensated for your losses and schedule a free consultation with a trusted Philadelphia product liability lawyer. There’s no inherent risk here–you never pay a fee unless we win for you. Reach out to the dedicated attorneys and staff of Baratta Law, LLC for guidance today by calling 215-914-8132 or filling out the form below.