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Defective Goods and Product Liability Claims

product liability and defective products

Product Liability Claim

Defective products can lead to injury because the manufacturers have not tested them rigorously before they are distributed or because they have faulty components.  If you decide to bring a product liability claim because you were injured then you may be entitled to claim compensation. This will also highlight to the manufacturer that their product is unsafe. This could lead to a recall of the product and it could save others from future harm.

What is a Defective Product?

Products are goods, electricity and the components of any product. The Consumer Protection Act 1987 (CPA) introduced statutory liability for defective products alongside liability in negligence. A product is generally considered defective under the CPA if the risk of damage to the person or property is: “not such as persons generally are entitled to expect.” When a Court contemplates the safety of a product, they will investigate:

  • The instructions and warnings provided to you
  • How the product was marketed i.e. what was it supposed to do
  • What you would be expected to do with the product

When bringing a claim, the burden is on the person bringing the claim to prove that the product is defective. The Claimant must have suffered damage or harm and there must be a causal link between the defect and the injury caused.  Proving this is difficult but not impossible, particularly if evidence suggests that your product is in fact defective.

Defective goods and product liability

As a consumer, you will handle many products in your everyday life and it can be easy to overlook injuries stemming from what could be considered defective manufacturing in law. Examples of potential product liability claims include but are not limited to:

  • Contaminated food items leading to sickness or injury
  • Beauty or pharmacy products that have caused skin damage or rashes
  • Badly designed equipment which results in harm being suffered
  • Electrical products which cause shocks, burns or scalding

How long are the producers liable for defective goods?

As a starting point, your claim must be brought within three years from the date the damage or injury was caused.  Products remain in circulation long after they are produced but a claim can be brought no later than ten years after the product is circulated. Should you have any questions after reading this article or you suspect that you may have a product liability claim, please get in touch with one of our experts. Product liability claims can often can be handled on a no win no fee basis. Speak to us and find out more.

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