Every day, we rely on countless products to make our lives easier, safer, and more convenient. When these products fail to work properly, innocent people can be seriously injured. If you or someone you love was hurt by a defective product, you have the right to take legal action against the product manufacturer, distributor, or another liable party. It is important that you work with a skilled and experienced personal injury lawyer who understands the complex process of filing a product liability lawsuit, as this area of litigation is extremely complicated and challenging.
At Pringle & Herigstad, P.C., we have been serving North Dakota since 1909, offering aggressive legal advocacy and client-focused representation tailored to each client’s unique situation. Our approach has helped us earn some of the highest settlements and verdicts in the state. We have what it takes to fight for you; schedule a free consultation with our North Dakota defective product lawyers at one of our offices, located in Minot and Grand Forks.
When Is a Product Considered Defective?
There is a difference between products that are dangerous and those that are defective. A product may be dangerous, but this does not necessarily mean it has a defect, whereas most defective products pose some risk to the user. For example, power tools are inherently dangerous, but when they are used properly, they do not pose an unreasonable risk of injury. However, if a power tool is missing a safety guard or comes without instructions or warnings, it poses an unreasonable risk of injury to the user and is likely defective.
Nearly all products can have the following three types of defects:
- Design Defects: These occur when the actual design of the product renders it unreasonably unsafe for normal, intended use.
- Manufacturing Defects: These are any flaws introduced during the creation/production of the product, regardless of the safety of the product’s design.
- Labeling/Marketing Defects: These occur when a product is missing safety warnings, instructions, or other important labels or when it is marketed for off-label use.
While design defects affect an entire line of products, manufacturing defects typically only apply to specific units within a line. Labeling/marketing defects may affect large groups or single units, depending on when the defect was introduced.
Examples of Common Product Liability Cases
All types of products are recalled or pulled from shelves all the time. While a voluntary or mandatory recall is one of the most obvious signs that a product is defective, not all defective products are recalled. It is important to be aware of common defective products, as this may help you identify whether a defective product played a role in or caused the accident that left you injured.
Some common examples of defective products include:
- Automobiles/Auto Parts: Vehicles with defective designs include SUVs that roll over easily or cars with improperly placed gas tanks, leading to explosions and fires on impact. Other examples of auto defects include faulty airbags, seatbelts, braking systems, engine components, accelerators, ignitions, and more.
- Drugs and Medical Devices: Over-the-counter medications, pharmaceutical drugs, and medical devices can become contaminated, have unreasonably dangerous side effects, fail to work properly, or be marketed for off-label/untested use. Examples of common defective drugs and medical devices include antidepressants, heart medications, acne medications, birth control, antiacids, testosterone medications, hip/knee replacements, hernia mesh, and more.
- Children’s Products: Everything from diapers to cribs to toys can contain dangerous defects, such as missing choking hazards, improper design, missing components, and more. Common defective children’s products include children’s furniture such as a crib, car seats, strollers, health/hygiene products, blankets, toys, and baby formula.
- Household Appliances: Defective household appliances—such as heaters, washers and dryers, dishwashers, stoves, ovens, water heaters, and more—can cause serious accidents and injuries, ranging from explosions to house fires to electrocution, flooding, and more. Household appliances can contain all types of defective, from faulty design to defective manufacturing to missing labels and improper marketing.
- Machinery and Tools: Both commercial equipment and residential-use tools can contain serious defects that put users at risk of severe bodily injury or death. Examples of common defective equipment, machinery, and tools include power tools, bladed tools, ladders, scaffolding, forklifts, bulldozers, conveyor belts, drills, and more.
- Safety Equipment: When the equipment we use to keep us safe is faulty, we face an unreasonable risk of serious injury. Some examples of defective safety equipment include missing safety guards/components, improperly installed seatbelts, defective airbags, and faulty safety gear, such as motorcycle and bicycle helmets, goggles, gloves, and more.
- Chemicals and Cleaners: Household and industrial cleaning agents, chemicals, and other substances may be defective if they pose an unreasonable risk of injury, harm, or death to people who use these products correctly and as intended. Examples include defective household cleaners, lead-containing products, detergents, solvents, paints, and other substances.
Product Liability: Holding Product Manufacturers Accountable
Filing a product liability claim is typically very complicated. Product manufacturers, distributors, and other entities can often be held liable under several legal theories, including strict liability, negligence, and breach of contract. At Pringle & Herigstad, P.C., our North Dakota product liability lawyers know how to investigate your case and determine who is liable.
We have taken on major product manufacturers and national/international companies involved in the creation and distribution of all types of faulty and harmful products. In our 100+ years in practice, we have helped thousands of clients successfully protect their rights and recover the fair compensation they were owed after suffering serious injuries and losses due to manufacturer negligence and wrongful conduct.
We provide free initial consultations and contingency fees, meaning you do not owe any costs unless/until we recover compensation for you. We are available for same-day appointments by request and can answer any questions you may have regarding your case or your best options moving forward.
Call Pringle & Herigstad, P.C. today at (855) 245-5100 to discuss your potential product liability case with one of our North Dakota defective product lawyers at absolutely no cost.