Products Liability

Attorney representation in Atlanta, Georgia since the seventies

If you, a family member or a loved one has been injured because of a defective product, you may be entitled to recover monetary damages. When you purchase a product, you have certain rights as a consumer. The most basic of these rights is that a company cannot intentionally mislead you into believing that a product is safe when it is not.  Large corporations are obligated by law to design, manufacture and sell safe products. When they fail, resulting in personal injury because  of  a defective product, you should speak with a member of our Georgia product liability attorney team.  Our years of experience will help to get you the  compensation to which you are entitled.  We will carefully listen to your story, tell you whether, in our opinion, your claim is worth pursuing,  and advise you of all your legal options.  If you are uncertain as to whether or not you have a claim, you can speak to one of our Georgia product liability lawyers at a free, no-obligation initial consultation. We will pursue  your claim to get you the compensation you deserve.

Despite advances in public safety legislation, many defective products are still found in the marketplace resulting in a large number of injuries and deaths. According to records kept by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), defective products have caused over 29 million injuries and over 22,000 fatalities in the US last year. The number of product recalls in the name of public safety mandated by the CPSC averages around 400 per year!  These recalls go a long way toward insuring public safety, but only represent the tip of the iceberg when it comes to hazardous products in the marketplace. This problem has been worsened by the influx of imported products from third-world countries in which concern for consumer safety takes a backseat to profitability.

Our injury attorney handles complex product liability cases in Atlanta

Product liability cases are particularly challenging for law firms as they are legally complicated, costly and difficult to litigate.  A plaintiff usually finds himself up against a large, well-financed corporation that hires top notch defense law firms.  There are complicated engineering and scientific principles involved in evaluating potential hazards. The amount of study, research and analysis required to formulate a viable claim can be a daunting task for the best of attorney teams.

Our Georgia product liability attorney team at R&K is not afraid to go head-to-head with large corporations.  We have 35 years of experience in recognizing a valid claim and we maintain a professional network of technical advisors.  This is a highly complex area of legal practice.  The testimony and documentation needed to support an allegation that a defective product was the primary cause of person's death or injury are unique to this challenging area of legal practice.

A defective product liability claim can be brought when a person is injured or killed by any type of defective consumer or industrial product after it was manufactured, placed in the stream of commerce, and then purchased for consumption for use by an individual. The types of products involved are virtually limitless, but here is a short list of some of the most common:

  • toys, baby cribs, mattresses, baby strollers, other items used by children
  • rifles, pistols, hand guns, trigger locks, pellet guns, and other firearms
  • ATV's, motor scooters, mopeds, mini-bikes, and golf carts
  • motor vehicles and automotive parts or accessories
  • jet skis, motor boats,, other goods used for water recreation
  • swimming pools, hot tubs, spas, diving boards, etc…
  • construction equipment of all types
  • industrial equipment such as forklifts, air compressors, etc…
  • contaminated food in restaurants
  • household appliances, stoves, furnaces, gas fireplaces, space heaters, irons
  • bicycles, trampolines, skateboards, and other similar recreational items
  • weight apparatus and other exercise equipment
  • medical devices of all types
  • toxic substances such as pesticides, herbicides, insect repellants,
  • flammable clothing such as kiddy pajamas and Halloween costumes
  • prescription drugs, diet pills, contact lenses and contact lens solutions

So, what does it mean for a product to be "defective".  The definition most recognized by case law is that of "unreasonably dangerous".  First, for a product to be "defective," it must be "unreasonably dangerous".  Many products are inherently dangerous, such as guns, knives and chain saws.  As dangerous as these items are, they are not unreasonably so, provided they are used for the purpose for which they were intended and with proper care as to the circumstances.  Despite their potential for danger these items are not considered to be "defective" because most reasonable people would agree that the benefit of their proper use vastly outweighs any potential for harm.  A gun however might be deemed defective if the chamber were so weak as to explode in the user's hand upon firing it.  A folding knife might be considered defective if the blade lock easily collapsed so as to retract and take off a finger.  And a chain saw with a poorly fabricated chain that flew off in the face of a user would likewise be considered defective.  The determination of actual defect should be left to  experienced attorneys.

Another factor that comes into play takes into consideration the possible uses of the product.  Abuse of an otherwise safe product can lend itself to unforeseen injury.  This is particularly true of prescription drugs that are known to be safe when taken in prescribed amounts and at scheduled times, but can have fatal effects if overdosed.  This potential in itself does not render the drug as being "defective" per se.  On the other side of the coin there are defective drugs, such as Fen-Phen and Thalidomide, which do indeed exhibit harmful effects when used in the manner recommended by the pharmaceutical manufacture.  Many of the common serotonin uptake inhibitor drugs that are commonly used for depression have been known to evoke suicidal and homicidal reactions. These drugs may well be "defective" and the subject of future litigation in a product liability case.

The State of Georgia recognizes three general categories of actionable defect:

  • Manufacturing Defect  – occurs during the production or assembly process;
  • Design Defect  – takes place during the pre-production or testing phase;
  • Warning or Instructional Defect – can take place before, during or after the product is produced and marketed.

The legal theories and causes of action that are recognize under Georgia law allow a plaintiff to base a claim on the following legal grounds

  • Strict Liability
  • Misrepresentation or Fraud
  • Breach of Warranty
  • Negligence

Product liability litigation is highly evidence-intensive and for that reason it is very important that someone locate, secure, and then preserve the object in question as soon as possible.  Video and photographic evidence should be gathered immediately.  Untouched accident scenes should be rigorously recorded.  Products should be photographed in minute detail soon after the accident and stored safely away as valuable evidence.  As this evidence will be essential to a solid liability case it is important to contact our Georgia product liability team at R&K as soon after the accident as possible, that we might act quickly to secure it along with witness testimony that will be important to the success of your case.  Don't hesitate to call us now so that this vital evidence and information may be preserved.

If you or a loved one has been injured or died as a consequence of using a defective commercial product you will need the assistance of an experienced Georgia product liability attorney.  We have successfully handled such cases for many Atlanta area families over the years and we pledge to do no less for you. We invite you to become part of our family of successful clients. We want for you to move forward and onward to a better life. That better life is but a simple phone call away and available to you at the law offices of R&K.  We await your call; toll free at 404 477-0959.  Your initial consultation will be free of charge.

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