It is easy for accidents to happen, especially so when there are defective products involved. For example, many homes built in the ‘90s feature circuit breakers made by Federal Pacific Electric, a defunct company. Circuit breakers have an important role in keeping your home safe; they automatically trip during an overload or a short circuit, stopping the current and preventing fires. Unfortunately, Federal Pacific Electric breakers often fail to trip, resulting into blazes that cause damage to property and loss of life. Experienced Brooklyn personal injury lawyers would be able to make a product liability case out of such a situation, especially if a person were injured in a fire caused by the faulty breaker.
Product liability cases aren’t just about defective items, though. These can extend to other products like dangerous drugs, which are sometimes rushed into the market with insufficient testing, and faulty construction equipment, which pose enormous risks to construction workers and personal property if they break down. While it isn’t easy to win cases like these, you can tap the help of reliable Brooklyn injury attorneys from firms like the Law Offices of Joseph M. Lichtenstein to ensure you get just compensation.
First, you’ll need to prove that you have been injured or sustained losses because of the product. This is often easily established; if you suffer an accident because of a product’s failure, then you’ve got a case. However, if you didn’t experience a loss or injury at all, you can’t file a case. For example, you’ve been taking a drug and heard it had side-effects. Unless you’re suffering from those side-effects, you can’t make a claim.
Second, you’ll need to prove that the product is defective and not just broken. Design defects make the final product unreasonably dangerous, like having a handle too close to a heating element or a hinge. These defects should not be obvious at first glance; warning labels on a product can shift the liability of the injury to you.
Third, the defect should be the cause of your injury. If your loss or injury was caused by something else while you were using the product like slipping on the floor or something similar, then the product maker can argue that something else was at fault.
Finally, you need to show that you were using the product as intended. For example, if you were using a toaster as a dryer instead of heating bread with it, and a fire resulted, you can’t claim that the maker was liable for that. However, if you were using a scissor to cut something and it suddenly broke while doing so, thus causing you injury, you have a case and chance at compensation.
(Source: I-Team: Faulty Circuit Breakers in Thousands of Homes Could Cause Fire, NBC)