You expect a product to work safely and efficiently when you purchase it. Unfortunately, this isn’t always the case. And while sometimes you can return a defective product for a refund and go on your way, other times, the product is so poorly designed or constructed that it results in harm or significant injury.
Defective products are either manufactured improperly or have an inherent, detrimental design flaw. Mistakes at the drafting table or in the manufacturing plant can result in products that harm or kill consumers, including children.
If a defective product has harmed you or someone you love, a product liability lawyer can help. These attorneys will seek damages on your behalf from all parties involved, holding them liable for your injury.
For years, The Lanier Law Firm has represented consumers who have been seriously injured by defective products, both at home and in the workplace.
Each case is different, and, depending on the jurisdiction the claim is based in, the laws can vary. There is no federal product liability law. Because of this, the United States Department of Commerce has published the Model Uniform Products Liability Act (MUPLA) in an effort to encourage uniform procedures for product liability statutes.
Product Liability Cases Handled by The Lanier Law Firm
Defective products affect everyone, from babies to the elderly, and injuries from these products can happen anywhere at any time.
We handle product liability claims related to the following goods, among others:
- Talcum powder
- Cow’s milk-based baby formula
- Vehicle rollovers
- Airbag injuries
- Boat accidents
- Infant and child car seats
- Commercial airline crashes
- Unsafe baby furniture and toys
- Electrical injuries
- Industrial equipment defects
- Industrial plant injuries
- Faulty Chinese products
- Evenflo high chairs
- EpiPen price-gouging
- Philips Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP)
Talcum Powder Lawsuits
As of December 2021, the baby care manufacturing giant Johnson & Johnson faces over 37,000 lawsuits for its popular baby powder.
The product liability attorneys for this large class-action case claim that the baby powder manufacturers knew that the talc was contaminated with asbestos, a leading cause of ovarian cancer and mesothelioma but failed to warn consumers about the risk.
Recent jury verdicts have found in favor of the plaintiffs, with damages in the billions.
Our Product Liability Attorneys
Meet some of our skilled product liability lawyers, all of whom are dedicated to helping people just like you receive the damages they’re entitled to.
Evan M. Janush is the managing attorney of the New York office and oversees business litigation for the firm. Named a Super Lawyer by Thomas Reuters, Mr. Janush’s experience with mass tort litigation has put him at the forefront of product liability law for many years.
Sam E. Taylor, II joined The Lanier Law Firm in 2014 and is the Managing Attorney of the asbestos litigation section in our Houston office. Mr. Taylor has over 30 years of experience representing clients in state and federal courts. As lead counsel, he has tried over 40 personal injury jury trials, including cases involving mesothelioma caused by asbestos exposure, wrongful death and other serious personal injuries.
Darron E. Berquist has been with The Lanier Law Firm for more than ten years and focuses on cases involving asbestos litigation, toxic torts, mass torts, pharmaceutical litigation, and product liability. He represents clients who have contracted lung diseases or cancer due to defective products and those harmed by medical malpractice.
Richard “Rick” Meadow is the national mass tort leader and the director of business development for The Lanier Law Firm. He oversees the firm’s pharmaceutical lawsuits and mass torts. Mr. Meadow has represented the rights of people harmed by defective products for more than 30 years.
Jud Waltman is the Managing Attorney in Houston over Personal Injury, Medical Malpractice, Product Liability and Maritime Litigation. He limits his practice almost exclusively to the representation of individuals who are victims of injury or death and has been awarded the prestigious AV-Preeminent Rating from Martindale-Hubbell Peer Review Ratings and been recognized by U.S. News and World Report’s Best Lawyers in America, Plaintiffs Personal Injury Litigation among other honors.
Larry Wilson has received numerous honors for his successes, including recognition by US News and World Report’s Best Lawyers in America, Thomas Reuter’s Super Lawyers, and Lawdragon 500 as a Leading Plaintiff Consumer Lawyer. He has achieved significant settlements and verdicts in multiple personal injury cases involving medical malpractice, sexual assault, discrimination, and automotive negligence.
Injuries Caused by Defective Products
Defective products can cause injuries ranging from minor abrasions, burns, or discomfort to significant disfigurement, life-changing medical conditions, or even death.
Defective products may harm only the user, or they can create situations where others nearby are harmed, such as when a vehicle has braking or engine problems and causes a car accident.
At The Lanier Law Firm, we can help you if you’ve sustained an injury such as:
- Ovarian cancer from the use of talc
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Spinal cord injuries
- Broken bones, fractures, and joint injuries
- Soft tissue injuries
- Organ damage
- Catastrophic injuries
- Wrongful death
Laws Designed to Protect Consumers from Dangerous Products
Although there is no codified federal standard for product liability and damages, several laws are designed to protect the consumer from dangerous or poorly made, harmful products.
Design defect laws cover products that are fundamentally dangerous or unsound. A design defect is a problem with the overall product itself; therefore, all of the products have the same flaw.
For example, if the seat belt latch in a new car is too small to stay inside the buckle well, then all of the cars of that year and model would have the same flaw since they were all crafted from the same flawed design plan.
Manufacturing defects arise during production and affect only a specified batch of products. For example, if a soup manufacturer lets bleach spill into a vat of soup, only soup cans from that batch would be affected.
Marketing defects occur when a product manufacturer fails to provide directions for safe use of the product or doesn’t place a warning label about the dangers of misuse of the product. In these cases, the design was sound, and the production was correct, but there may be some ambiguity for users that ends up in harm.
For example, the nozzle of a can of hairspray may look almost the same all the way around; without a small direction arrow that indicates the spray opening, users may inadvertently spray hairspray into their eyes. Therefore, warning labels and visual instructions are put on hairspray.
Statute of Limitations Laws for Product Liability Claims
A statute of limitations is the window of time that someone has to file a suit for property damages or personal injury. Once that time limit expires, the wronged party has no legal recourse. In New York, the statute of limitations for product liability is three years from the date of the incident or three years from the date of discovery for toxic substances.
For general product liability, for example, if your car’s airbag failed to deploy or a child’s high chair collapses, then the three-year statute of limitations starts with the date that the incident occurred.
Toxic substances, however, have a statute of limitations from the day the harmed individual discovered that they had cancer or another medical complication arising from the use of the product.
Consider the Johnson & Johnson talc lawsuit. Many women used the talc as directed, applying it near or around the genital area. Particles of the powder traveled into their reproductive organs and led to ovarian cancer. The statute of limitations would start when a woman discovered that she had cancer, not when she first used the powder.
Many times, exposure to toxic substances has a cumulative effect. Therefore people may not realize they’ve been harmed until the injury is severe or after using the product for years. This statute of limitations is designed to protect those affected.
Recovering Damages in a Product Liability Claim
Product liability damages are awarded for up to three categories. Depending on the circumstances, your case may include one, two, or all three of the following types of damages:
- Economic: quantifiable monetary loss, such as property damage
- Non-economic: subjective damages, such as loss of companionship, decreased quality of life, or emotional trauma
- Punitive: a “punishment fine” to deter product creators from releasing dangerous products
The Benefits of Working with a Product Liability Attorney from The Lanier Law Firm
Your likelihood of being awarded a settlement that covers all of the loss and monetary damages you suffered improves when you have the help of an experienced, knowledgeable product liability lawyer.
Establishing responsibility for a defective product can be complicated, and putting a dollar amount on non-economic and punitive damages can be tricky. It’s not something that you want to do on your own.
Instead, opt for The Lanier Law Firm. When you choose our qualified product liability lawyers to represent you, you benefit from our experience in court as well as the resources we have available to pursue your claim.
The Lanier Law Firm can help you get justice from the party or parties responsible for the defective product that caused you harm.
The Lanier Law Firm is a multi-state law firm representing clients across the country. We have offices in New York, Houston, and Los Angeles. Our attorneys are licensed to practice in many states, which means we can represent clients who don’t reside in New York, Texas, or California.
For example, we participated in the Johnson & Johnson talc lawsuit, which was tried in a St. Louis court and resulted in a $4.69 billion verdict in favor of our clients.
The Lanier Law Firm's Substantial Product Liability Recoveries
The Lanier Law Firm has had many successes in addition to our product liability case against Johnson & Johnson. We’ve also won significant victories for our clients in other types of product liability cases.
In a decision that protected the health and interests of thousands of women, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that the decision in the Johnson & Johnson talc product liability lawsuit was valid. It upheld the $2.1 billion award the jury granted the plaintiffs, thus securing the damages to which they are entitled.
Calling the conduct of the personal care supply giant “reprehensible,” a Missouri court of appeals upheld the jury’s decision to find the corporation liable and approved the $2.1 billion award to the plaintiffs.
For many affected by a defective hip implant, this $245 million verdict meant that they could have an improved quality of life by receiving the damages they were entitled to. The jury unanimously delivered the verdict in this bellwether trial.
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