A defective product is a product that does not function as marketed and causes harm, such as an electronic appliance that catches fire, a bicycle that has faulty brakes, or even a food product that is contaminated.
At least if you are injured by a defective product, you have the right to take legal action against the responsible company. Here is a look at how to go about it.
If you are injured while using a defective product, make a note of how it happened as soon as possible to get the facts down. Also, gather evidence such as videos or photos if possible.
Having concrete evidence will strengthen your case.
Obtain Medical Treatment
After an injury, seeking medical treatment should be your immediate priority. Your health is paramount. Furthermore, visiting a healthcare professional will corroborate your claim. Remember to keep all medical records showing how the defective product injured you, as these documents will be essential when filing your claim.
Every detail counts in a legal proceeding. So, the more documentation you have, the better. For instance, you should find the purchase receipt for the defective product, or print out a credit card statement, to prove you bought the item at an exact time and place.
Also, note down any incidents related to your injury. And if there were witnesses at the time of the incident, note down their contact details too.
Meet with a Lawyer
You should hire a lawyer who specialises in personal injury law and has experience working on defective product cases. A skilled lawyer will ensure that you navigate the legal landscape effectively. They will also guide you on how to handle communication with insurance companies.
Ultimately, a good lawyer can mean the difference between winning and losing a defective product lawsuit, so make sure you hire a reputable and experienced lawyer.
Join a Mass Tort Lawsuit
Sometimes, defective products can cause harm to many people. If the product that injures you has also affected a large number of other individuals, consider joining what is known as a mass tort or class action case.
In such instances, victims collectively sue the manufacturer or responsible party. This type of lawsuit often makes sense when handling cases against big companies. As one among many who have been affected, there is power in numbers.
One significant benefit to this approach is pooling resources together, which includes legal fees and evidence gathering. Sharing testimonies and evidence strengthens the case overall.
Plus, individual cases within a mass tort are treated separately, so damages are awarded based on each plaintiff’s specific circumstances.
File a Lawsuit
Once you are confident about your case, your lawyer will help you to file a lawsuit. That will involve preparing and submitting essential documents, such as complaint pleadings, that detail the nature of your claim, the parties involved, the legal basis for the complaint and the damages sought.
Few defective product lawsuits actually end up going to trial. Usually, both parties attempt to reach an out-of-court settlement by negotiating an amount that fairly compensates for the injury. If you settle out of court, it can significantly shorten the duration of your claim process.
Proceed to Trial
If no satisfactory settlement can be reached, be prepared for trial. In a court of law, all evidence will be presented before a jury or judge who will make a final ruling on whether compensation should be awarded and if so, how much should be awarded.