While many have heard the term "buyer beware," that does not mean that product manufacturers hold no responsibility for consumer safety. It is the product makers, not the consumer who uses the product, that need to ensure the product does no harm. When the worst happens and you get hurt by a bad product, the manufacturer may owe you monetary compensation. Read on to find out more.
An Educated Consumer
That being said, you have to follow the manufacturer guidelines or you might not be able to sue them when things go wrong. Many people wrongly assume they know how to use a product and throw the instructions and warnings away with the packaging. If that sounds like you or someone you know, you might not have grounds for a lawsuit if the product harms you because you misused it. In most cases, warnings mean that a consumer has already been injured in the past. It also means that if you fail to heed the warnings and get hurt, the manufacturer will use the warning to defend themselves against a lawsuit. In most cases, warnings are there to protect not just you, but the product maker too.
Broad Disclaimers of Liability
The word liability represents an important legal concept. It means the legal and financial responsibility of fault. You may have encountered wording on some packages and instructions that seem to be an attempt to absolve the maker of any and all liability. That might include wording that says you are using a product at your risk and the company is not liable for any injuries that result. As you might imagine, these disclaimers are not legally-binding. When a consumer is hurt, judges and juries generally ignore overly broad disclaimers of all responsibility and award damages to the victim. Unfortunately, consumers often take those disclaimers seriously and fail to take legal action when they are hurt.
Taking Legal Action Against Manufacturers
If you've been hurt by a product, chances are you are not alone. Manufacturing defects and poor design of products can mean thousands of consumers are hurt and want to take action. In some cases, class action lawsuits are filed against a manufacturer. This way of taking action combines lots of cases into a single case. This saves time and makes it easier for consumers to include themselves in a class. You don't have to join a class action suit, however. You can take action against manufacturers just by speaking to a personal injury lawyer. Speak to a lawyer about the ways a product has harmed you and find out how to proceed.
For more information, talk to a personal injury attorney in your area.