Product manufacturers have a duty to make products that are safe for consumers to use as intended. When companies breach this duty, and a person dies due to a defective product, the survivors of the deceased can file a wrongful death action for product liability against a number of parties, including the manufacturer of the product.
Wrongful deaths caused by defective products may involve any of the following:
- Automotive defects, including faulty seat belts, dangerous airbags, or defective tires
- Medical devices, such as surgical staplers or implants
- Pharmaceutical medications
- Children’s products, such as infant “sleepers,” cribs, toys, or clothing
- Industrial machinery
- Sporting gear
- Electronic appliances
Types of Product Defects
Types of product defects that may lead to a product liability claim for injury include:
Any design defect means that the product is inherently dangerous based on how it was designed, and would be defective regardless of the quality of the manufacturing process.
This type of defect is due to a problem with how the product is made or assembled. The product may not have been made to the design specifications, have missing or shoddy parts, or may not have been properly inspected.
Examples of marketing defects include incorrect instructions, or lack of safety warnings.
Wrongful Death Claims
In the case of defective product fatalities, typically, the spouse, child, or surviving parent, or another immediate family member of the decedent may be able to file a wrongful death lawsuit. Wrongful death statutes vary from state to state.
The estate representative may file a claim as the “plaintiff” against the following parties:
- The product designer
- The manufacturer of the product or component parts
- The company who installed or assembled the product
- The company that distributed the product
- The company who sold the product
In a wrongful death case, it is the plaintiff’s responsibility to prove negligence in the design, manufacture, or marketing of the product. The plaintiff must also prove that the defect was the direct cause of death, and that the decedent was using the product appropriately as intended, and not in a dangerous or careless manner.
A law firm specializing in both wrongful death and product liability, such as the attorneys at TorkLaw, can help you build a case against the negligent parties. We can support you not only in obtaining appropriate and fair compensation, but ensuring more people do not suffer the same fate.
Defective product fatalities usually arise from unreasonably dangerous products. Manufacturers must be made to recall dangerous products, and distributors to stop selling defective products. While no amount of money will bring your loved one back to you, a wrongful death claim can help you gain some sense of justice, and the knowledge that your case is making the world a safer place.
Contact us today for a free, no-obligation consultation. We will offer you both compassion and sound legal advice.