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Product Liability Attorneys in Massachusetts & New Hampshire

When you purchase a product, you expect it to be safe for you to use. There are a multitude of rigorous safety and quality assurance checkpoints that a product must go through to reach the consumer market.

However, this process and the accompanying guidelines aren’t consistently successful at preventing companies from manufacturing, advertising, and selling products that are or can become dangerous to consumers. The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission estimates that a staggering 29.4 million injuries are caused every year by unsafe products. Deaths caused by defective products exceed 21,400 annually, and the average cost of damages is $700 billion.

If you or a family member have been injured or became ill as a result of a defective product, a Massachusetts product liability lawyer can help.

What Is a Defective Product?

A defective product is a product that has become dangerous to consumers due to one or more of the following:

  • A design defect that existed before the product was even made
  • A manufacturing defect that took place during the product’s manufacturing or assembly
  • A marketing defect in the way the product is advertised, labeled, lacks sufficient instructions or has inadequate safety warnings

Product liability laws are made on a state-by-state basis; there are no federal consumer laws that protect individuals from defective products.

Examples of Defective Products

Generally, any product can meet the criteria of being “defective” under the right circumstances. However, some products are found to be improperly designed, poorly manufactured, or sold deceptively more frequently than others. These include but are not limited to:

  • Child safety seats (car seats)
  • Children’s toys
  • Tires for cars, trucks, motorcycles, bicycles, ATVs, and other motor vehicles
  • SUVs with top heavy designs
  • Seatbelts and airbags in motor vehicles
  • Prescription and over-the-counter medications
  • Medical devices, including both over-the-counter and surgically implanted

Consequences of Poorly Made or Deceptively Sold Products

Unfortunately, the cost of poor-quality, defective, and deceptively sold products is high and it’s usually the consumer that pays the price. Depending on the product, the nature of its use, and how it was defective, the consequences can be serious. Injuries, illnesses, and wrongful death can occur during or after the use of a defective product.

Children are particularly vulnerable to products that may be defective, like car seats and other safety devices. Or, they may come into contact with toys made with lead or toxic chemicals.

Who Is Liable for a Harmful Product?

If a product is found to be defective and that defect resulted in injury or damage to someone else, one or more parties may be held responsible.

This may be:

  • The product’s designer. If it’s determined that the design of the product is what caused it to become defective, the entity that designed or created the product may be liable for the resulting damages.
  • The product’s manufacturer. If it’s determined that a defect during the manufacturing process caused it to become dangerous, it may be the manufacturing facility that will be held accountable. The manufacturer could also be held responsible if they failed to include proper warning and usage labels on the product.
  • The product’s distributor or retailer. If the product became dangerous by being left on a shelf too long or was stored in improper temperatures, the company that sold the product could be named in an insurance claim or lawsuit. The product’s retailer may be accountable if they made false or misleading claims about the product.

If multiple parties contributed to the product’s defectiveness, they may all be held legally accountable for any harm that resulted from the product’s use. However, this generally requires the assistance of a skilled product liability attorney who can clearly illustrate how each party was responsible for or contributed to the plaintiff’s damages.

What Options Do Victims of Defective Products Have?

Victims of defective products and their families have a few options after being harmed by an unsafe product, such as:

  • Reporting the defective product to the manufacturer. Most product manufacturers will suggest that you contact their customer service department in the event a product is defective. There should be a telephone number on the product’s packaging, however, the resolutions offered by manufacturers are unsatisfactory and amount to little more than a replacement or refund.
  • Pursing compensation from the responsible party’s liability insurance. A product liability attorney can help you bring a claim forward against the insurer of the responsible party. Often, the insurance carrier will offer a settlement agreement in order to prevent you from suing their client. In some cases, this settlement is enough. In many cases, it’s not and barely covers the cost of medical expenses and lost wages as a result of the injury.
  • Suing the manufacturer, designer, or retailer themselves. If you are unable to reach a satisfactory settlement agreement with the insurer of the defective product’s manufacturer, designer, or retailer, a consumer protection lawyer can help you bring a lawsuit the aforementioned parties. Consumer protection litigation may be able to help you obtain a suitable resolution.

Call Massachusetts & New Hampshire Product Liability Lawyers Mazow | McCullough, PC Now

Don’t wait to get help from someone you can trust after you or a loved one were hurt by a defective or dangerous product. You could be eligible for financial restitution to help ameliorate medical bills, lost wages, and other damages your family has sustained as a result of being harmed by a defective product.

Massachusetts & New Hampshire product liability attorneys Robert E. Mazow and Kevin J. McCullough are experienced consumer protection lawyers who can assist you in obtaining justice and compensation.

Contact us today to book your consultation at (978) 744-8000 or toll free at (855) 693-9084.

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