There are times when people do not directly get hurt due to a person’s negligent or willful conduct. Instead, they get injured because of a defective product. For example, a car might have a transmission problem, resulting in a traffic accident.
If you suspect a product defect is at fault for your injuries here in Massachusetts, you could consider getting legal advice first. A Massachusetts product liability lawyer can assess your situation and guide you through the process of seeking compensation.
Grounds for Product Liability in Massachusetts
Product liability cases generally fall under the purview of strict liability, which means designers, manufacturers, and sellers can be at fault for injuries caused by their products. For example:
- The product’s design is flawed or does not meet safety standards
- There was a manufacturing error
- The product lacks instructions for proper usage
Under the Massachusetts Consumer Protection Law, consumers can also take legal action against the manufacturer or seller if they fail to disclose vital information or mislead them. For example, if an auto dealership knowingly sells you a defective brand-new car, they could be at fault if you crash later on.
Proving Fault in a Product Liability Case
In a negligence-based action, you would have to show that a person’s lack of care led to your injury—or most likely caused it. Such is typically not the case in product liability. Like a dog bite case where a responsible owner is still liable for the dog’s actions, you do not need to prove that the manufacturer acted negligently. You only have to prove that the product had a defect that injured you.
The Massachusetts product liability lawyer can help you find proof of the defect and the injuries you suffered. These can include medical records, physician’s reports, and photographs.
For a free legal consultation with a product liability lawyer serving Massachusetts, call (561) 995-1966
Damages in a Product Liability Settlement
Similar to other injury cases, a product liability settlement’s damages can be categorized into economic and non-economic damages. Let us look into what they are and how the Massachusetts product liability lawyer can help you compute them.
Besides gathering evidence of the defect, the Massachusetts product liability lawyer can also help you organize documents of your injury-related expenses. This will help them estimate your economic damages, which repay you for your financial losses.
Some examples of economic damages are as follows:
- Medical Expenses: These can include doctor’s appointments, medications, treatments, and hospitalizations.
- Lost Income: You may also get compensated for the income you lost while unable to get back to your job or manage your business.
- Funeral and Burial Costs: If the product defect resulted in a loved one’s death, the settlement could also include damages for funeral expenses.
If the product defect also damaged your property, you could also recover damages for them. For instance, if the defect caused an auto accident, you could file an action to cover your auto repair expenses.
Also known as pain and suffering damages, these serve to compensate for more abstract losses resulting from the product defect. Estimating non-economic damages can be complex, as there is no fixed formula for calculating them. However, the value typically depends on the injury you suffered.
The Massachusetts product liability lawyer can review your condition to make a projection of the non-economic damages you could recover. One popular formula is to multiply your economic damages by a multiplier ranging from 1 to 5. The more severe your injury, the greater the multiplier will likely be. For example, permanent spinal cord damage and paralysis could get a multiplier of 4 or 5.
Examples of non-economic damages include:
- Disabilities and disfigurements, such as permanent scarring or loss of a limb.
- Psychological trauma caused by the accident and injury
- Chronic pain
- Loss of consortium (if a loved one died due to the product defect)
Massachusetts Product Liability Lawyer Near Me (561) 995-1966
Product Liability Compensation Options
You can typically file a product liability claim or a lawsuit against the at-fault Massachusetts manufacturer or seller after compiling your evidence and damages. The Massachusetts product liability lawyer can serve as your legal representative when facing the liability insurer or the civil court. They can also help you comply with your case’s filing requirements, including your submission deadlines.
While not mandatory in the state, manufacturers may carry liability coverage to pay for their victims’ losses. The Massachusetts business’s liability insurance company will assess the case before determining how much you can recover. However, the settlement can be limited by their policy limits.
Product liability lawsuits have no such limitations, so the attorney can advise this option if the business does not have enough coverage or is uninsured. However, it may take multiple court proceedings to get a verdict if the case is complex, though the product liability lawyer can accompany you all the way.
You Can Still Share Fault for Your Injuries
Successfully proving that the product defect injured you does not guarantee that you can recover the full case value. The comparative negligence laws in Massachusetts General Laws Ch. 231 Section 85 can apply to product liability cases. If the claims adjuster or court finds you partly responsible for your injury, you can only recover some of your damages.
To illustrate, suppose you file a claim after your car’s defective brakes caused a collision. While the car manufacturer is mainly liable for the defect, the insurance claims adjuster also finds you 30 percent responsible for speeding. They argue that this contributed to your risk of crashing. That means you can only recover 70 percent of the settlement amount. You cannot recover damages for being over 50 percent at fault.
Before filing your product liability action, it would be in your best interest to have the Massachusetts product liability lawyer review it first. They can check if you have compiled all available evidence to sufficiently support your statements. Doing so can reduce the blame placed on you.
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Our Team Is Open for Consultation
If a product defect injured you or a loved one here in Massachusetts, do not hesitate to consult with the office of GED Lawyers right away. Our Massachusetts product liability lawyer can review the matter to see whether you have a valid case. We can then assist you with pursuing damages from the at-fault manufacturer or seller.
With nearly 30 years of experience in Massachusetts personal injury cases, our team is here to handle your legal concerns anytime. You can reach our 24/7 support team by calling (844) 941-2569 or speaking with our live online chat agents. You can also request your free assessment by sending us the details requested in the form provided on this website.