Articles Posted in Product Liability

li-tzuni-507346-unsplash-copy-300x199When you purchase a new product from the store, you probably do not expect to bring it home and get injured from using it. This scenario, unfortunately, is all too common. In fact, in 2016, there were about 240,000 injuries that led to emergency room visits involving toys and other children’s products alone. If you or a loved one has been injured by a defective product, contact an experienced products liability attorney immediately so that he or she can start fighting for your rights and getting you the compensation you deserve for your injuries.

What is Strict Liability?

Strict liability means that one party is liable for the other’s injuries no matter what. In the context of product defects in California, strict liability means that when a consumer is injured by a product, the designer, manufacturer, or seller is responsible for the consumer’s injuries, even if the designer, manufacturer, or seller did not act negligently in designing, manufacturing, or selling the product. As long as there is a causal relationship between the product and the consumer’s injury, strict liability applies.

bernard-hermant-663480-unsplash-copy-200x300If you have ever purchased a product from the store that ended up not working or, even worse, injured you because it was not working properly, then you have experience with a product liability case. There are several different types of product liability, and the one least talked about is failure to warn. In California, if a consumer purchases a product with a warning defect and is injured by the product as a result, the consumer may have recourse against the manufacturer, distributor, or seller for both compensatory and punitive damages. If you have been injured by a product as a result of a warning defect, call Brod Law Firm at (800) 427-7020 to speak with an experienced product liability attorney today.

Three Things You Should Know About California’s Strict Warning Defect Laws

  1. There are seven elements that need to be met in a warning defect claim.

drew-taylor-325456-copy-300x225Energy drinks are popular in the U.S., and many brands have been developed or grown in response to eSports, or multiplayer video game competitions. During these types of competitions, where there are numerous players and fans attempting to stay awake and alert for long periods of time, many are eager to ingest energy drinks, like G Fuel. However, there have always been questions regarding the safety of these energy drinks. Now, the Environmental Research Center (ERC), a non-profit in California, is suing Gamma Enterprises, LLC, which does business as Gamma Labs, for there being too much lead in G Fuel.

California Law on Dangerous Chemicals

Proposition 65, which was voted into law in 1986, requires the state to publish a list of chemicals it knows to cause birth defects, reproductive harm, and/or cancer. The list is updated every year, and as of December 2017, there are approaching 1,000 chemicals on the list.

freestocks-org-126848-copy-300x200Drug manufacturer Johnson & Johnson agreed to a $33 million settlement with the federal government and 42 states after it was alleged that its subsidiaries failed to maintain quality control standards and produced defective products over a two-year period. The defective over-the-counter medications include: Tylenol, Motrin, St. Joseph Aspirin, Benadryl, Sudafed, Zyrtec and Zyrtec Eye Drops, Rolaids, Pepcid, and Mylanta. It was alleged that these products had musty odors, contained unwanted particles and bacteria, and did not dissolve properly. This put products with improper labels on the market and put consumers at risk.

More on the Settlement

Under the settlement agreement, the responsible subsidiaries, McNeil-PPC and McNeil Consumer Health Care, agree to not unlawfully promote OTC medications. They will uphold internal standards and federal regulations, including taking preventative and corrective actions when manufacturing OTC drugs. The businesses will not represent online that their manufacturing facilities meet Good Manufacturing Practices if they instigated a recall of an OTC drug product within the previous 12 months. If a recall occurs, they will promptly respond to all written requests from attorneys general seeking information to identify wholesalers and warehouses of the affected drugs.

alisa-anton-134332-copy-300x200As of March 7, the SoyNut Butter Company has recalled all I.M. Healthy SoyNut butter and I.M. Health Granola due to contamination. According to the Food and Drug Administration, these products have Shiga toxin-producing E. coli bacteria. The company previously announced a voluntary recall of its I.M. Healthy Original Creamy SoyNut Butter, but additional illnesses and investigations led to an expansion of the recall to include the chunky, honey cream, unsweetened, and chocolate varieties. The granola comes in original, apple, blueberry, and raisin and cranberry, which are all subject to the current recall. All sizes of these products should be immediately thrown away.

Reported Illnesses

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention are investigating 16 illnesses linked to the SoyNut Butter Company products across New Jersey, Maryland, Virginia, Wisconsin, Missouri, Washington, Oregon, Arizona and California. The first six states have one illness each, while Oregon has two reported illnesses and California and Arizona each have four.

800px-BladeCuisinart-300x198You likely use metal kitchen utensils all the time. You would hardly think twice of using a metal knife. In the same way, it is entirely normal that a blender or food processor has metal blades. You use metal implements to cook and bake because you expect the material to be strong, sharp, and resist wear and tear. However, as a Cuisinart product proved, you can encounter kitchen tools made with inferior metal parts that lead to dangerous situations and injuries. Conair recently recalled approximately 8 million Cuisinart food processors because of reports that pieces of the blades were breaking off into food. Conair received 69 reports of broken blades, 30 of which included information about tooth injuries and lacerations inside the mouth, the Consumer Product Safety Commission reported.

If you have been injured due to a defective productive like the Cuisinart food processor, you should speak with an attorney about bringing a product liability claim in court. California product liability law is complex, and it is best to have an experienced lawyer on your side if you need to recover compensation.

Understanding Product Liability Claims

800px-Pine_Chest_of_Drawers_Handle-300x225A furniture warning and recall from IKEA has prompted many people to take steps to make their dressers safer. Dressers, and other large pieces of furniture pose a serious danger to young children. Children may climb on the furniture, causing it to fall onto them. IKEA furniture has injured or killed some children. Although any furniture is capable of falling, IKEA has taken steps to make their furniture less hazardous. As recently as this week, parents have reported toppling furniture that has fallen onto toddlers.

What Causes Furniture to Fall?

Dressers and similar pieces of furniture are naturally top heavy. While the drawers are closed there is generally no danger. However, when the drawers are open, it can cause the dresser to have more weight in the front, causing it to fall over. Young children have been found to open drawers in order to climb on the dressers. When a child opens a drawer and puts his weight on it, the dresser is unable to remain steady, and can topple forward, directly onto the child.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Those who have paid careful attention to the news over the past year may remember manufacturer Takata, whose defective airbag inflators are believed to be responsible for at least 16 deaths and another 100 injuries. According to reports, the defective airbag inflators contain a substance called ammonium nitrate. Ammonium nitrate is used to inflate the airbag quickly in the event of a crash, but the compound can explode unintentionally in hot and/or humid conditions. In the Takata airbags, the explosion causes the metal canister in which the compound was stored to blow apart and become deadly shrapnel. The Takata inflators were mainly found in cars manufactured by Honda.

Recall Notices Not Having Intended Effects

800px-Jeep_Grand_Cherokee_3.0_CRD_Overland_(WK)_–_Frontansicht,_10._September_2011,_DüsseldorfThere have been a plethora of car-related recalls and warnings issued in recent years, with many of them uncovering serious and/or fatal defects and resulting in hundreds of thousands – even millions – of vehicles being taken off of the roads for repairs. After a 15-month investigation, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has concluded that the automatic emergency braking (AEB) system in 2014 and 2015 model-year Jeep Grand Cherokees do not show any signs of defects. The investigation was launched in June 2015 after several drivers reported the AEB system engaged without a reason for doing so. However, NHTSA concluded this week that no defect existed in the AEB system in the vehicles examined.

An automatic emergency braking system is one in which sensors mounted on the car detect if a forward collision is imminent and automatically engages the brakes of the car if the driver fails to do so. Even where a collision is not avoided, AEBs can reduce the severity of a crash.

Allegations of a Defective AEB System Trigger Investigation

A California federal judge recently rejected a proposed settlement that would have resolved a class action lawsuit filed against homeopathic remedy manufacturer Similasan. The class action lawsuit was filed on behalf of two classes of plaintiffs who alleged that the manufacturer’s claims about the effectiveness of its products used to treat earwax, sinus, and anxiety issues were deceptive. The parties notified the federal district court that they had reached a settlement agreement earlier this year, and the court had given preliminary approval to the proposed settlement agreement. However, when the case came back before the court in August 2016 for final approval, the court found sufficient reason to reject the agreement.

Problems with the Class Action Settlement

The federal district judge overseeing the case expressed serious reservations over the terms of the proposed settlement and refused to approve the settlement. Some of the court’s concerns included: