An Arizona man is suing a Pennsylvania-based ladder manufacturer after he fell off a ladder and sustained serious injuries to his foot. Within the claim, the man is alleging a breach of express warranty, strict liability, inadequate warnings, and defective design.
The story is an interesting one, as it showcases that injured individuals can file a claim against manufacturers. However, these claims are largely misunderstood, causing many not to file a claim even when they are eligible to do so. Below, our Philadelphia product liability lawyer breaks down the three most common myths about these claims, and the truth behind them.
You Do Not Have a Case if the Warranty is Void or Expired
Many people fail to file a lawsuit involving a defective product because the warranty has expired, or was voided altogether. Fortunately, this does not prevent you from filing a product liability claim. A product may be covered by either an explicit or an implied warranty. An explicit warranty is one that clearly outlines what to expect from the product and that it is free of defects. When an explicit warranty is in place, it can serve as a strong foundation for a case.
Implied warranties are those that are not necessarily in writing. Still, consumers should have a reasonable expectation that any product they purchase will not contain any defects. All products have an implied warranty because consumers do not expect to buy defective products, and this can help a claim.
You Do Not Have a Case if You Did Not Use the Product as Intended
It is a common misconception that you cannot file a claim if you were not using the product as it was originally intended, but that is not true. Manufacturers are expected to foresee how consumers may use their product and to ensure it is safe to do so. Chairs are one of the most common examples of this. Although chairs are meant to sit in, it is not uncommon for people to use them in different ways. People may use a chair to prop a door open, or they may stand on them to reach high areas. Manufacturers should foresee these uses and ensure their products are safe to use in these manners.
You Do Not Have a Case if You Modified the Product
Just as manufacturers must foresee alternative uses for their products, they must also foresee how a product may be modified. For example, children may color on their toys or place stickers on them. Manufacturers must understand these alternatives and foresee any risks associated with those modifications and either change the design or warn consumers of the risk of doing so.
Call Our Product Liability Lawyer in Philadelphia Today
Product liability claims can help you recover any loss you suffered while using a defective product. At van der Veen, Hartshorn, Levin & Lindheim, our Philadelphia product liability lawyer can answer all of your questions and handle every aspect of your claim so you receive the full and fair compensation you deserve. Call us today at (215) 486-0123 or contact us online to schedule a consultation and to get the sound legal advice you need.