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Charleston, WV Product Liability Attorney

Charleston, WV Product Liability Lawyer

You probably use an endless number of products throughout the day, and you expect them to be safe and free from defects. However, there are times when these products can turn dangerous or even deadly.

In these situations, victims of these products can pursue legal options.

Manufacturers, designers, and sellers are responsible for keeping their consumers safe. When they fail to do that, they can be held liable for any damages, injuries, and losses.

If you’ve been injured by a faulty consumer product, a dangerous drug, or a malfunctioning device, you have options to seek compensation. At DiPiero Simmons McGinley & Bastress, PLLC, we have helped our clients recover compensation for these negligent parties.

Schedule a consultation with Charleston, WV product liability lawyer, to learn more about how we can assist with your case.

What Is Product Liability?

The National Safety Council released a report stating that around 12.7 million people were treated for injuries from consumer products. In these instances, product liability is the main focus of these cases.

Manufacturers, designers, and sellers are responsible for producing items that will not cause harm or injury to consumers. All these products should be reasonably safe for their intended use. If an item is defective or dangerous, the manufacturer or seller can be held liable for any resulting damages.

Consumers have the right to expect that those items will not cause harm or injury when they purchase or use products. If any injuries occur, they can pursue a civil claim.

These laws focus on the concept of strict liability. Under these principles, a plaintiff doesn’t need to prove that a defendant acted negligently or intentionally. Instead, they only need to show that the product is dangerous or defective.

You may be eligible for compensation if a dangerous or defective product has injured you.

Product Liability in West Virginia

When it comes to product liability lawsuits in West Virginia, there are three main types of cases: design defects, manufacturing defects, and failure to warn.

Design defects occur when a product’s fundamental design is inherently flawed. As a result, it is unsafe for its intended use. An example of a design defect might be a car model with a braking system that fails to stop the vehicle. The flaw is in the initial design. In turn, it poses risks to drivers and passengers.

On the other hand, manufacturing defects happen during the production process and affect individual units of a product.

For example, if a batch of medication is contaminated due to an error at the factory, this manufacturing defect can lead to patients suffering harm from consuming this specific batch.

Finally, when manufacturers fail to provide adequate warnings or instructions about potential risks associated with their products, that is known as a failure of warning. For instance, this can happen when a prescription drug does not outline potential side effects that could lead to harm.

If any of these issues exist, the plaintiff may have grounds for a strict liability claim.

Types of Defective or Dangerous Products

Product liability can extend to a wide range of categories; some of the most common cases center on:

Dangerous Drugs

While the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) ensures safety, all medications carry risks. Some drugs can be downright dangerous or even deadly due to side effects, interactions, or unforeseen complications.

A few specific examples of the dangers associated with prescription drugs include Proton Pump Inhibitors (PPIs). This product was used to help with acid reflux and has been linked to kidney disease, bone fractures, and heart attacks.

Another example is Abilify, an antipsychotic drug prescribed for mental health disorders, which has been found to cause self-destructive behaviors like compulsive gambling and binge eating.

Defective Automotive Parts

Auto part defects can emerge at any stage of the manufacturing process, from design flaws to faulty production or inadequate quality control.

These defects can encompass a wide range of components, including brakes, tires, airbags, ignition systems, and electronic control modules.

General Motors (GM) faced a product liability case for faulty ignition switches. From 2000 to 2004, GM produced vehicles with defective ignition switches that could shut off engines while driving, disabling airbags. The defect led to accidents, injuries, and fatalities, resulting in extensive legal battles and recalls.

Takata, a major airbag manufacturer, issued one of the largest automotive recalls in history. Their defective airbags were linked to 16 deaths and hundreds of injuries due to explosive deployment. Over 40 million vehicles worldwide were affected by Takata airbags.

Faulty Consumer Products

When it comes to the topic of faulty goods, these products do not meet the standards of quality, performance, or durability that a reasonable consumer would expect. Faulty consumer products can encompass a wide range of items, from electronics and appliances to clothing and toys.

One example of a faulty product is the Samsung Galaxy Note 7. These products faced a global recall in 2016 due to battery defects. The batteries in these smartphones were found to overheat, catch fire, and even explode, which led to the recall of millions of devices.

The recall cost Samsung billions of dollars and severely damaged the company’s reputation.

Another example of faulty goods is the Peanut Corp. of America salmonella outbreak in 2009. This obscure peanut processor in Georgia faced a massive salmonella outbreak that resulted in widespread illnesses and deaths. As a result of the outbreak, the company was forced to issue a recall that cost them over $1 billion.

The above is just a sampling of the types of items that could fall into this area of the law. If you have been injured in any way, make sure to contact a product liability lawyer in Charleston, WV.

At DiPiero Simmons McGinley & Bastress, PLLC, we can help you determine whether you have a valid claim to pursue a legal case.

What Are the Most Common Injuries Associated with These Cases?

Depending on the type of product, victims can suffer from a wide range of injuries. Some of the most common ones include:

  • Facial injuries: Defective airbags, faulty eyewear, or poorly designed safety gear can cause these injuries.
  • Internal injuries: Malfunctioning seat belts, car seats, or medical devices can lead to internal injuries.
  • Burns and scalds: Faulty appliances, electronics, or heating devices can cause burns.
  • Chemical exposure and poisoning: Defective containers, cleaning products, or medications may expose users to harmful chemicals.
  • Electrocution and electrical injuries: Faulty wiring, appliances, or electronics lead to electrical shocks.
  • Psychological and emotional trauma: Product-related accidents may produce anxiety, depression, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

Many of these injuries result in minor issues to lifelong complications. In any case, you should have never been hurt by a product that you trusted. When these accidents occur, you need to hold those responsible parties liable for their negligent actions.

Who Is Responsible for Injuries Caused by a Defective Product?

When injuries occur, you will want to know who is responsible for them. In most cases, several parties can be held accountable. They may include:

  • Manufacturers: If a defect in the design, manufacturing, or labeling of a product causes injury, the manufacturer may be liable.
  • Designers: Any party involved in the product’s design and engineering can also be held liable.
  • Distributors and retailers: If they knowingly sell or distribute a defective product, they may share liability.
  • Suppliers: These entities must make sure that the products they provide are safe and meet the required safety standards.

Product liability law holds all parties in the distribution chain accountable. Strict liability means that defendants are responsible for defects, regardless of negligence. If you have any questions about your potential case, consider consulting with a Charleston, WV product liability lawyer.

What Damages Can You Recover?

When someone is hurt by a defective or dangerous product, they are often eligible for compensation from the liable party. These damages may include:

  • Economic damages are designed to compensate you for your financial losses resulting from the injury. Past and future medical expenses, lost income, property damage, and household adjustments are some of these potential awards.
  • Another type is known as non-economic damages. They are not as easy to quantify, but they will compensate you for the non-financial effects of the injury. These can include pain and suffering, loss of consortium, loss of enjoyment of life, disfigurement or scarring, and other similar damages.
  • Punitive damages are another type of damages that may be available in product liability cases. Unlike economic and non-economic damages, punitive damages are not intended to compensate you for your losses. Instead, they are meant to punish the defendant for their wrongful conduct.

If someone dies as a result of a defective product, their surviving family members can file a wrongful death claim. These damages may include loss of income, funeral expenses, and emotional suffering.

The type and amount of your damages will depend on the severity of your injuries and the specific circumstances of your case. If you want to know what you can expect with your case, make sure to contact a Charleston, WV product liability lawyer.

What To Do After Getting Injured by a Dangerous or Defective Product?

If you have suffered an injury due to a defective product, you need to take immediate action. Some of these important steps include:

Seeking Medical Attention Right Away

Your health and safety should always be your top priority. Get medical attention as soon as possible following the injury. If you receive any treatment, make sure to always keep detailed records.

Preserving the Defective Product

You will want to keep faulty items as evidence. After an incident, you never want to discard or alter them in any way.

A physical product is vital for establishing liability, whether it’s a drug, medical device, vehicle part, or toy.

Documenting the Incident

Along with that, you will want detailed notes of how you acquired the product and the circumstances surrounding the injury. Make sure to keep records of your purchase, such as invoices or sales receipts.

Consulting with a Defective Products Attorney

Finally, you always want to reach out to a lawyer experienced in product liability cases.

They can guide you through the legal process and assess liability. Also, the professional will make sure to adhere to all deadlines in the process, including filing within West Virginia’s two-year statute of limitations.

Get the Help You Need for Your Product Liability Case

While you don’t have to prove negligence in these cases, there are still many steps to success in your legal claim. For that reason, you will want to reach out to a skilled and experienced Charleston, WV product liability lawyer.

At DiPiero Simmons McGinley & Bastress, PLLC, we have years of experience helping our clients get the compensation and justice they deserve in these situations.

If you would like to learn more about how we can assist, make sure to schedule a free initial consultation today.

The information on this website is for general information purposes only. Nothing on this site should be taken as legal advice. Viewing does not constitute an attorney-client relationship. Prior case results do not guarantee a similar outcome.
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