What a Lawyer Must Prove to Win a Product Liability Case

Thousands of injuries occur each year in the United States from defective or dangerous products. Victims of dangerous defective products have legal protection under product liability laws throughout the country. These laws govern the legal rules that determine who can be held liable for the defect or danger to consumers.

In general, products sold to the public are required to meet common expectations of consumers. When those products have an unexpected defect, common expectations of consumers are not met.

More than one party could be held liable for injuries that occur from consumer use of a defective product. This includes all sellers that are part of the distribution chain for making the product. Parties that are potentially liable for a defective product include the manufacturer, parts supplier, wholesaler and the retail store from which the product was purchased by the consumer.

The type of defect will determine who is responsible for a liability claim. All of the specifics related to a product liability case may differ among states. However, there are certain elements that a lawyer must prove to win a product liability case for his or her client. These elements include:

  • Injury and/or loss was caused by the product
  • Product was defective
  • Manufacturer’s error led to flaw in product
  • Manufacturer failed to warn consumers about potential dangers
  • Product was used correctly

Product Caused Injury and/or Loss

An actual injury or loss is a crucial element for a lawyer in proving a product liability claim. Specifically, the injury or loss must be a direct result of the product’s defect. In some cases, demonstrating the link between an injury and product defect is straightforward. In other cases, proving that the defect caused the injury or loss is not so easy.

For instance, a client was injured in a car accident while driving a vehicle prone to flipping over. If there is evidence that the client was speeding when the accident occurred, the manufacturer could argue that reckless driving – not the design of the vehicle – caused the accident.

However, a client could suffer third-degree burns when a brand new electric tea kettle explodes because of a hairline crack. The client did nothing out of the ordinary while using the tea kettle and could have a strong injury claim.

Product is Flawed Due to Manufacturer’s Error

In addition to proving that the product caused an injury or loss, the lawyer must also prove that the same product is defective. For some cases, the defect could be the result of a problem at the manufacturing plant. For others, the defect is within the product design, which means that the entire product line is dangerous for consumer use.

A lawyer might have a harder time proving that there was a flaw in the product design. The most likely scenario is demonstrating that an unreasonable design created the danger. However, a product that has potential danger is not automatically a judgment against the manufacturer or supplier when an injury occurs.

There are times when designing a product in a cost-effective or reasonable way is not feasible. Consider the potential dangers of vehicle air bags. While they can cause serious injury to a driver or passenger, they can also save lives in certain collisions. Car manufacturers would argue that when alternative outcomes are considered, air bags are not unreasonably dangerous.

Manufacturer Failed to Warn Consumers of Potential Dangers

Typically, a lawyer might have a better chance at proving an injury or loss occurred from a defective design when the average consumer is not aware of the dangerous quality. A ruling in such cases may depend on whether the manufacturer failed to warn consumers of the potential dangers. The manufacturer or supplier must show that instructions and warnings were reasonably sufficient.

In this case, a client might suffer third-degree burns from an electric tea kettle because the steam valve is concealed by some part of the product design. An average consumer would expect to find a visible spout from where steam is released. Instead, the steam valve is placed in an inconspicuous area, which strengthens a defective design claim.

Proving defective design is problematic if the tea kettle included bright red stickers printed with the word “caution” and the user manual included warnings about the steam valve position. The legal question now becomes whether the warnings were adequate.

Injured Client Used Product Correctly

Generally, the lawyer’s client must use the product correctly; that is, the way the manufacturer intended the product to be used. Continuing with the tea kettle example, an example would be if the explosion occurs when used to heat water for an outdoor kinds’ pool is not the intended use.

If the kettle explodes and causes burns, the lawyer may not be able to prove manufacturer liability. The manufacturer is not required to make the tea kettle safe for use with an outdoor pool.

However, this does not mean that use of every product must conform to the manufacturer’s specifications. The key is proving whether the average consumer would or would not use the product in the same manner as the client. If so, the lawyer has met the reasonable expectation of use requirement.

Winning a product liability case involves deciphering often complex circumstances and establishing a good legal theory. A lawyer who is knowledgeable of product liability law and the litigation process will craft a strategy to prove the case. An immediate investigation into the facts surrounding the case could expose obvious defective issues. Further, expert testimony is often essential in proving that a defective design caused an injury and/or loss.

Understanding the Nature and Purposes of Promotional Products

A very essential factor that any business and company must have is a constant flow of traffic. Knowing this, business owners need to find techniques to enhance the exposure of their company. Advertising is the best way to do this; however, in this modern world there are already various methods of promotion that you could choose from. You can benefit from the media through T.V, radio and Newspaper advertising, create an attractive collage or flier or make use of valuable materials such as bags and shirts.

How Promotional Products Work

Researchers have shown and proven that these products have done an outstanding effect in increasing money traffic, generating leads, developing a company’s identity and in building client’s loyalty especially in this tough economy. These promotional products work by imprinting your company’s logo and name unto the item. The most common materials used are bags, shirt, and toys. Because these items are appealing and beneficial, people like to accept them and serves as motivators and incentives. Because they are so products to choose from, you can be flexible in planning an effective advertisement. According to a research study conducted by one of the universities in the United States, these techniques can significantly increase rates for up to 75 percent.

Promotional Products Pros

Promotional products are flexible and can be suitable in any kinds of ads and in any situations. The effectiveness and impact of your products used in promotion on the marketing campaigns can be easily measured, and feedback can be seen every time. When your customers received an item from you, they will feel they are given importance by your company and therefore provide a great way in building clients’ loyalty by a higher perceived value. They also complement targeted campaigns and other media with its ability to be modified for the exact campaign and can also work efficiently when joined together with other marketing products.

It is proven that promotional products are effective techniques used to improve product sales, but there are times that these items are not applicable for other purposes. There are times that small business may sometimes find difficulty in paying for these products due to a deficiency in resources compared to bigger companies. Generally, products used for promotions are for short durations and increases sales for a short while which is difficult to maintain. The bottom line is you need to ensure that your marketing and advertising department should use effective strategies on how to implement properly your marketing strategies.

5 Ways to Boost Personal Productivity

Are you always looking for a way to stay sharp, gain an edge and boost your personal productivity? If so you are in the good company of a large percentage of the rest of the population of the planet earth. With so much to do and the list seemingly growing every day we are all looking to increase our personal performance if for nothing more than to just make it to tomorrow.

Increasing productivity starts with getting the most out of what skill sets you already have. With that said here are 5 ways to find the productivity improvement you are looking for by ‘fine tuning’ what you already have.

Start Early

The saying ‘early to bed early to rise makes a man healthy, wealthy and wise’ is something many of us are familiar with and it holds much truth. Starting your day early gives you the opportunity to take advantage of your energy level while at it highest. Both the mind and body tend to wear down throughout the course of a day so it only makes sense to be sure to get the most out of both while they are at their optimal levels.

Develop a Fitness a Routine

Along the lines of increasing personal performance a fit body will possess more stamina and ‘staying’ power allowing you to stay ‘sharper for a longer period of time. It is also a well known fact that exercise supplies more oxygen to the brain allowing it to function more effectively. So here is what you get for exercising, sharper brains on a more fit body, what more could you ask for?

Also adopting a regular exercise routine will help you fall asleep quicker at night so that you can wake up early the next morning

‘List Out’ Your Day

Developing a daily list of priorities will help you maintain your focus on completing those tasks you judge as important. Generally just simply listing out your ‘day in advance’ will automatically help you prioritize the tasks on your list. As your ‘to do’ list is being developed you can make any necessary adjustments as to scheduling or changes in your priorities. This is a great way of ‘scheduling goals’ on a daily basis!

Strengthen Your Strengths

Any strength you may have can almost ALWAYS be improved upon! One of the best ways of increasing productivity is to simply get better at what you are already good at. Besides if you are good at something you usually also enjoy doing it therefore you will not mind spending more time on it to make improvements.

Work on Your Weaknesses

To get better we sometimes need to venture outside our ‘comfort zone’ which means taking on something we are not good at. By dedicating just a small amount of time each day to work on some of our weaknesses we will begin to see improvements in these areas over a short period of time. After a while we will get better and more comfortable with these ‘former weaknesses’ which will make it even easier to spend more time working on them.

If you are driven it is only natural and quite commendable to want to boost your current personal productivity. With an ever growing list of demands, finding ways to increase our personal performance is the best way to tackle these new challenges. Developing new talents and skills is one way to find the productivity improvement necessary to meet these challenges. Another more practical approach to increasing productivity however and possibly even easier is to further develop the skill sets we already have. The 5 ways to do this as discussed above focuses more on ways to strengthen or better utilize any current assets we have. In this way we can build upon that which we already know thereby making us better at that which we already do.