Bringing a Lawsuit for Defective Products
Whether you developed ovarian cancer after using Johnson & Johnson baby powder or suffered severe burns from an exploding e-cigarette battery, the injuries that can occur from a defective product are often life-threatening – and very costly to treat. Under product liability laws, American manufacturers and distributors both have a distinct responsibility to exercise a “duty of care” towards the public, and to reduce the risk of product-related injuries as much as possible.
That also means that you can hold the manufacturer or seller accountable for your injuries in a court of law. Of course, this can often be a more daunting process than people imagine. As experienced Florida trial attorneys focusing on product liability and asbestos injury claims, we’ve made it our mission to stop corporate negligence in its tracks, and to help victims recover appropriate compensation.
In this post, we’ll touch on some of the ways you can get started when you have a defective product case on your hands.
Understanding Product Liability Laws in Florida
Depending on the nature of your defective product claim, you could be looking at an individual product liability lawsuit, a complex mass torts case, or even a full-on class action lawsuit. No matter what level of lawsuit you want to bring, however, your case will still be subject to Florida product liability laws. The statute of limitations in this state is 4 years for injuries done to a person or property, and 2 years for a wrongful death due to the defective product.
There are three major categories of product liability claim in Florida:
- Design. When a consumer product fails to work as intended, one of the causes can be a defect in the design itself. If the design is “unreasonably dangerous” to the average consumer, even when used correctly, the parties who created or implemented the faulty design could be liable for your injuries.
- Manufacturing. In a manufacturing defect claim, you need to show that something went awry during the manufacturing or construction process. This could include the introduction of dangerous toxins like asbestos, mold, or carcinogenic metals. It could also mean that the product has a tendency to fall apart or combust in dangerous ways, due to key manufacturing errors.
- Marketing. When companies market their products as safe, trustworthy, and reliable, they can be held accountable when those same products cause widespread injury. Additionally, you can pursue a lawsuit when the manufacturing and marketing teams did not properly warn consumers about the safety risks.
Florida also observes the rule of pure comparative negligence in personal injury cases – which means that you can still file a product liability suit even if you were partially responsible for the accident. Of course, it’s important to keep in mind that your damages will be reduced according to your percentage of responsibility. For instance, if you are proven 30% responsible after using a faulty kitchen appliance for the wrong purpose, your compensation will be reduced to 70% of the original amount claimed.
How Do I Bring a Defective Product Claim?
When something goes seriously wrong during the product creation and distribution process, you may not be the only individual affected by the result of that negligence. That’s just one of the reasons it can be daunting to bring a product liability claim. There could be dozens or even hundreds of other people who experienced identical injuries to you, and they could be living across state borders, or be completely unaware of their rights as a consumer.
At The Ferraro Law Firm, we’re skilled at getting to the bottom of complex product liability cases and ensuring that the right parties are held accountable. If there’s an existing mass torts or class action case for your product, we can coordinate with other legal teams and ensure that your voice is heard during the proceedings. We can also help you initiate a claim of your own, and follow wherever the case leads. Either way, we’re passionate about pursuing justice on your behalf, and we will be relentless in seeking the financial recovery you deserve.
For more information, call our Florida legal team at (888) 554-2030.