Failure to Warn About Dangerous Products
Consumers have the right to expect that the products they buy are safe to use. Conversely, manufacturers, distributors, and retailers have a duty to ensure that the products they create, distribute, and sell to consumers are safe.
When a consumer is injured by a defective product, they are entitled to pursue a product liability claim to hold the liable parties responsible for their injuries and losses.
Claims under California’s product liability laws generally fall into one of three categories:
- Design Defect Claims – related to how the product was designed.
- Manufacturing Defect Claims – involving poor workmanship or a mistake in the manufacturing process.
- Marketing Defect Claims – based on inadequate instructions for the safe use of a product or a failure to warn the public of the inherent dangers associated with the product’s use.
Failure to Warn
Failure to warn the public of the inherent dangers associated with using a certain product may be grounds for a product liability claim against any party in the products line of distribution. Products that fit this category have dangers that are present regardless of the design or manufacturing process and require adequate warning labels for the public.
Examples of failure to warn include:
- A child’s toy that is sold without a label warning of the potential for a child to choke on the product.
- A pain medication whose label does not warn consumers that it can cause dangerous side effects if used in combination with other common drugs, like aspirin.
- A paint remover that is sold without adequate instructions for its safe handling and use.
Manufacturers generally have a duty to attach a warning to products whenever:
- There is a danger associated with a product when it is used in its expected (foreseeable) manner;
- The manufacturer knows about the danger(s); and
- The danger is not known or obvious to the product’s user.
In other words, a product must come with a warning whenever there is a hidden hazard associated with its use that the manufacturer knows or should know about.
The warning must be clearly communicated so that the nature and consequences of the hazard could be clearly understood by the likely user at the time of purchase or use.
Moreover, the warning must include specific and comprehensible instructions about what the user needs to do (or not do) to avoid the consequences of being exposed to the product’s danger or hazard.
Compensation For Damages Resulting From a Failure to Warn in California
Despite the existence of laws that require warnings to be attached to dangerous products, manufacturers frequently fail to adequately warn consumers of inherent dangers, resulting in serious injuries to many.
If you or a loved one has been injured or killed as a result of a failure to be warned of the dangers associated with a certain product, you may be eligible to file a product liability claim in order to recover damages. Examples of recoverable damages include:
- The cost of past and future medical bills;
- Past and future lost wages and income;
- Compensation for pain and suffering, permanent disability, and disfigurement; and
- Funeral and burial costs.
Contact an Experienced California Product Liability Attorney
Product liability is a specialized area of law that requires the knowledge and skill of an experienced attorney. The right attorney understands the complexities of product liability cases and how to build a strong case against the product’s manufacturer, distributor, retailer, and other liable parties.
Our expert product liability attorneys accept cases on a contingency fee basis. This means that you do not pay us fees or costs until and unless we obtain a settlement or judgment on your behalf.
For more information, call us at (562) 901-4664 or visit our contact page to arrange a free consultation with a knowledgeable and experienced California product liability attorney.
Christopher Montes de Oca is an experienced personal injury lawyer in Los Angeles. Chris is recognized as a “Super Lawyer Rising Star,” a recognition that only 2.5 percent of lawyers receive, because of the exceptional results he has seen and his dedication to his clients. Chris services clients throughout Los Angeles, including Echo Park, Maywood, Long Beach, Whittier, Glendale, La Mirada, Pico Rivera, Hacienda Heights, and Alhambra. Call him today for a free consultation at (562) 901-4664.