While we expect that the products we buy are safe to use and consume, each year, defective products are responsible for many injuries and deaths in New Mexico. Common hazards posed by these dangerous consumer products – which range from defective auto parts to children’s toys to dangerous pharmaceuticals and many more – include burns, electrocution, broken bones, choking, and poisoning.
When defective products cause accidents, injuries, or even death, victims may be entitled to compensation. If you have been severely injured by a defective product in Albuquerque, the attorneys at Parnall Law are ready to help you seek justice.
Many product liability accidents could have been prevented if the manufacturers of these products took proper precautions to ensure the quality, safety, and proper use. State and federal laws give consumers legal options to seek justice and compensation for harm caused by defective products.
The Albuquerque product liability attorneys at Parnall Law are highly skilled in handling claims related to defective products. Hurt? Call Bert! Contact us today to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation.
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What Is Product Liability?
Product liability refers to the legal responsibility of a manufacturer, distributor, or seller for allowing a dangerous or defective product to get into the hands of a consumer.
Companies must take due care in designing, manufacturing, and marketing products to consumers. Allowing a defective product slip through the cracks and injure consumers may result in lawsuits against the liable company.
Types of Defective Products
There are many different types of defective products that could cause injuries or death, including, for example:
- Automobiles and automotive parts
- Motorcycles, scooters, and ATVs
- Children’s toys
- Prescription and over-the-counter drugs
- Medical products and devices
- Power tools and machinery
- Food products
- Household appliances
- Electrical equipment
- Propane tanks
Defective product claims typically fall into one of the following three categories:
- Defectively designed products
Defective design indicates that an entire product line is defective because of the product’s design, instead of an error during manufacturing of specific units. An example of this is an SUV that is prone to flipping. The manufacturer could be liable for failing to design a safe product and conduct adequate safety tests. Another example would be a children’s toy designed with small parts that could be easily ingested by the child.
- Defectively manufactured products
This defect happens during the manufacturing process. It could indicate that a single product in a line is defective, or that certain individual units of a product line are defective. A manufacturing defect example would be a prescription or over-the-counter drug that has been tainted by a toxic substance. In this case, the manufacturer may be liable.
- Products with insufficient instructions or warnings
If a manufacturer fails to provide instructions on how to safely use a product or fails to warn its risks, this could give rise to a claim based on a marketing defect. Manufacturers may not be liable for failing to warn of obvious risks, such as the fact that their knife is sharp and could potentially cut you. An experienced product liability attorney can let you know if you have a failure-to-warn claim against a manufacturer.
Common Injuries from Defective Products
Common injuries from defective products include:
Victims of accidents caused by defective products can suffer from broken bones. People who suffer broken bones in car accidents that were caused by defective vehicles or vehicular parts often need surgery. This surgery could involve titanium screws to secure the bones.
Prescription and over-the-counter medications can be defective. Some drugs cause dangerous side effects that the user was not made aware of, while others may be mislabeled, causing consumers to take the incorrect dosage or create harmful interactions with other drugs. Defective pharmaceuticals can lead to serious heart, liver, or kidney damage.
New forms of technology sometimes come with serious risks, including shocks, fires, and burns. In addition to electronics, clothing and furniture can be defective for not meeting flammability standards.
Accidents involving defective products can result in eye injuries that cause a victim to partially lose vision or even go blind. Eye injury victims often face extended time off from work or not being able to work due to the injuries they have suffered.
Spinal cord injuries are often very serious and lead to lifelong disabilities and paralysis. Victims can suffer these injuries from driving on an unsafe tire or a malfunctioning brakes system that leads to a car accident, for example. Other defective products that could lead to a spinal cord injury include unsafe flooring materials and stairwells without handrails.
Head injuries and TBIs are common in people who use defective bicycles, motorcycles, and helmets, among other products. While the user may be wearing a helmet to protect their head, the helmet could be defective and destroyed upon impact, which would offer little or no protection.
Defective products can cause severe injuries that result in costly medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and more. If you have been seriously injured because of a negligent manufacturer, designer, or retailer, you should not have to pay for your injuries. Contact the experienced Albuquerque product liability lawyers at Parnall Law to find out what your legal options are.
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Product Liability Laws in New Mexico
New Mexico law states that manufacturers or distributors will be held strictly liable for a defective product that causes injury. This means an injured consumer will not have to prove that the designer, manufacturer, retailer, or distributor acted negligently.
These parties can be liable for damages even if they used care in the creation, marketing, and distribution of the product. In order to recover compensation in a product liability lawsuit, you will need to establish that the product was defective, you suffered injuries as a result, and you incurred damages.
Under New Mexico law, the parties that may be held strictly liable for damages related to injuries caused by a defective product include:
- Manufacturer. This includes any entity that designs and markets a product, ranging from sole proprietors to large multinational corporations. With products made up of many components, such as cars, boats, and machinery, the court could hold a parts manufacturer liable if its negligence caused a defect.
- Wholesaler or distributor. If a wholesaler knows of a defective product and continues to distribute it, they may be liable for any injuries to consumers caused by the product.
- Retailer. When retailers sell a product, they are implying that the product is safe. Some go as far as creating marketing materials that make claims about safety. In cases such as this, the retailer could be held liable for a product liability claim even though they did not design or manufacture the defective product.
- Licensors and franchisers. Licensors and franchisors market and represent the product, similar to a retailer, so either of these parties could be held liable in a product liability lawsuit in New Mexico.
Establishing fault with a product liability lawsuit is often complex and difficult. There can be many liable parties involved. If you have suffered an injury due to a defective product, you need to consult with an experienced New Mexico product liability attorney.
Compensation for Defective Products
Damages you could possibly claim in a product liability lawsuit include:
- Medical expenses (past, present, and future)
- Lost wages and loss of future earnings
- Pain and suffering
- Permanent or temporary disability
- Loss of companionship
- Loss of consortium
Filing a product liability lawsuit can be complicated, especially for people unfamiliar with the process. You have to meet strict deadlines, and you will need to collect evidence to support your claim.
When you have the experienced product liability attorneys of Parnall Law on your side, you can rest assured that you have a highly skilled and knowledgeable team handling your case.
Large corporations and manufactures that produce defective products often hire a team of high-powered attorneys, and they will stop at nothing to minimize the amount they have to pay victims. This is why you need an aggressive lawyer who is adept at negotiating and litigating to seek the maximum compensation possible for you.
Contact a Product Liability Lawyer Today
If you have a viable product liability claim in Albuquerque, the attorneys at Parnall Law are prepared to represent you and seek to make things right. We can handle all the complex legal aspects of your claim. We’ll fight to seek a proper negotiated settlement or jury award for you while allowing you to focus on recovering from your injuries and getting your life back on track.
Hurt? Call Bert! Contact us now to schedule a free and confidential consultation.
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