Product Liability Law, Upholding and Protecting the Rights of America’s Buying Public

Manufacturers have the following legal duties:

  • Make sure that their products are safe and will not cause harm;
  • Include on their products’ labels all vital instructions or warnings that consumers need to know; and,
  • Indicate clearly and accurately on product labels all of the product’s ingredients.

False claims regarding what a product can do is a deception, an act that can result to a lawsuit, especially if, besides not giving the results it claims to give, it ends up causing harm to users.

Product liability is that area of the law that holds manufacturers, distributors, suppliers, retailers, and all those who are part of the distribution chain liable for the harm caused by defective and injurious products.

Through the product liability law, the rights of America’s buying public are upheld and protected; it is also aimed at ending the thousands of injuries that dangerous and defective products cause American consumers every year. This task, of making sure that consumers get exactly what they pay for and not end up taking home a defective or dangerous product, is assigned to the U.S. Bureau of Consumer Protection of the Federal Trade Commission.

A product defect includes failure to fulfill claims or promises made about a particular product or service. One example is a universal remote control that is claimed to be able to control all electronic equipment in your home, but ends up controlling only your TV.

Thousands of tort suits or product liability claims due to injuries caused by defective products are filed against product manufacturers every year. Unfortunately, despite all the laws that require compliance with federal quality standards, so many defective or poorly made products still escape the watchful eyes of authorities, get displayed in stores and sold to millions of unsuspecting American consumers who trust that what they purchase are safe and without defects. This is not the case, however, as can be proven by the injuries and deaths that have already been reported, traced, proven and documented by the United States Consumer Products Safety Commission (CPSC). Some of these reported cases include:

  • Close to 30,000 electric blankets which, when folded or bunched, have the tendency to overheat and burn the user;
  • Dell’s 200,000 laptop batteries, which showed risks of overheating and causing fire;
  • 220,500 harmful children’s toys; and,
  • The Ortho Evra® birth control patch that can cause death after causing the development of blood clots in the user;

According to Ontario personal injury lawyers of Mazin & Associates, PC, “Defective products are generally borne out of negligence or a careless party failing to exercise the reasonable standard of care when handling the product. In serious cases, faulty products may cause serious injury or disability to anyone who uses them.

There are a variety of factors to take into consideration when addressing product liability. The existence of a faulty product is not enough to warrant litigation. It must also be proven that a particular product defect caused your injuries. Product defect can be attributed to a range of areas, including:

  • Defective household products
  • Toxic food products and containers
  • Dangerous childcare products and toys
  • Dangerous drugs
  • Defective vehicles
  • Manufacturing defects
  • Design defects

To make a claim against a defective product, you additionally must prove that you were not mishandling or misusing the product in a way that would cause injury or negative side effects. Thus, if it can be proven that a defective product has caused injury to you or a member of your family, the decision is yours to hold the responsible parties accountable.

Broken Bones and Personal Injury

Broken bones may seem like a necessary part of growing up. You fall out of a tree or off your bike and spend the next six months in a hot pink cast signed by all your friends. In this sense, broken bones may seem harmless or minor, but bone fractures can often be a serious injury, depending not only on their severity and location, but on the patient’s ability to obtain appropriate medical help for the injury. Fractures are often characterized by limited mobility, complete or partial inability to move a limb, intense pain, and even protruding bones in severe cases, making appropriate medical help all the more important, but all the more expensive.

Unsurprisingly, the worse the fracture, the more expensive the medical bill. However, if the injury occurred as the result of negligence or recklessness on the part of a different person or company, the case may fall under personal injury law and the other party may be responsible for medical payment, easing the burden on the victim. According to Russo, Russo, & Slania, P.C., there are a number of protections provided to every citizen under tort law, making the scope of personal injury cases larger than most people realize, even encompassing cases with broken bones.

Given this large scope, many people do not realize their fracture may be covered under personal injury laws. Dangerous working conditions, slip and falls, and even some motor vehicle accidents could be covered, making it paramount for victims to explore various legal avenues if they believe their injury did not occur as a result of their own conduct. If you are unsure if your case is covered under personal injury law, contact a lawyer and look at all your options. Serious fractures can be a painful burden, but the associated medical bills don’t have to be.

Holding Nursing Homes Liable For Bed Sores

The number of bed sores related lawsuits has increased over the years. This is a proof of the poor care that nursing homes are providing to its residents or patients. The truth of the matter is that studies have revealed that residents of nursing homes are more likely to develop bed sores today than ten years ago. When left untreated, severe injuries, infection, or deaths may occur. This will entitle the families and relatives of the patient to file a lawsuit against the facility.

In the first place, bed sores will never occur if the nursing home facility that cares for them will do their responsibility. The staff of the facility must do everything to ensure that basic prevention methods should be implemented. These preventive measures may include:

  • Regularly moving patients consistently
  • Preventing malnutrition and dehydration
  • Making sure the patients remain dry and clean
  • Using specialized cushions or mattresses to relieve pressure for high-risk patients

The prevalence of bed sores in nursing homes is a clear sign of the poor standard of care in these facilities. While they are preventable, bed sores can be excruciatingly painful and can lead to serious injuries. They can have a huge impact not only on the patient but also their families. Bed sores can lead to serious implications or even death. For this reason, a lawsuit can be held fully responsible for the injuries or death of the patient.

The sad fact is that nursing homes often mislead patients and their families by saying that bed sores is a fact of life and part of growing old. The truth about it is that bed sores develop very slowly over time and that they are the product of the inattentiveness of caregivers over a long term period. It mirrors the poor conditions of nursing homes and the result of neglect of caregivers.

Workplace Injuries: How to Cope With Sudden Disability

The Bureau of Labor Statistics found that there had been 2.8 million work-related injuries reported in the private industry sector for the year 2014. A lot of these injuries resulted in disabilities. As Scudder & Hedrick, PLLC had pointed out, there have been many individuals disabled due to workplace injuries every year. For a lot of these workers, experiencing sudden disability can be a great challenge.

Aside from the physical and financial concerns that come as a consequence of it, a new disability can also cause individuals severe emotional distress. Adjusting to a new reality can understandably take some time. This is why many experts emphasize the importance of a reliable support system. People still adjusting to their disability will find relief in the company of family, friends, and other individuals with similar experiences.

When dealing with sudden disability, it’s also important to read up and learn more about what this new situation requires in terms of lifestyle choices and other similar concerns. While it has obvious challenges, remember that a disability is not an impediment to living a full life. Certain lifestyle changes will have to be made, but this doesn’t mean that life will have to remain at a standstill. At this stage, it’s important to consult with a physician and a psychologist, as both can provide appropriate advice and assistance.

For individuals disabled by workplace injuries, consulting with an attorney experienced in labor and employment law is particularly crucial. In most instances, injuries acquired while on the job entitle individuals to receive workers’ compensation benefits. These payments can be a huge help with sorting out medical expenses and other financial concerns caused by the new disability. Workers’ compensation claims can easily become complicated, however. To ensure that the process is expedited, it’s best to ask a professional for help.

DUI Felony

Drunk-driving or impaired driving due to alcohol is the cause of at least 10,000 fatal car crashes in the U.S. which number to more than 32,000 every year. In 2010, the US Department of Transportation’s Bureau of Transportation Statistics registered 13,365 fatal car accidents, while the number of those arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol or illegal drugs or both, reached 1.4 million.

In all U.S. states, driving with a 0.08% (or higher) blood alcohol concentration (BAC) level is considered a crime. Though a first offense DUI is usually treated as only a misdemeanor (a more serious offense, though, if the alcohol-impaired driver injures or kills someone, of if his or her BAC level is higher than the 0.08% limit), a Nashville criminal defense attorneys of Horst Law explains how it still can change your life, as it can result to the suspension of your license which, in turn, can lead to many other inconveniences for you, plus the fact that your driving history is marred with a traffic offense.

Many federal and state authorities are determined and zealous in catching violators of the anti-drunk driving law, thus, they are sharp and focused on observing any signs of drunk-driving, such as braking erratically, driving too slowly, swerving, stopping for no apparent reason or zig-zagging across the road. For the same end, they set up sobriety checkpoints to check on alcohol-impaired drivers as well as measure their BAC level.

A DUI felony is punished with costly fines and at least one year jail time. In some states, a felony leads to other heavy sentences, such as:

Mandatory installation of an Ignition interlock, which is a device that will prevent a vehicle from starting if it detects in the driver a BAC level that is higher than what is considered a safe level (about 0.02%);

Administrative license suspension (ALS), a law that gives law enforcers the authority to confiscate a driver’s license if the driver fails a chemical test. This can last for 90 days – 180 days, during which driving privileges may be limited to/from work;

Open container law. This law, which is administered by the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) and the he National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), requires states to prohibit the possession of open alcohol beverage containers, as well as the consumption of an alcoholic beverage, in the passenger area of a motor vehicle on public highways.

Understand just how serious a DUI charge is should make a person think twice before sitting behind the wheel after consuming alcohol. However, there are just instances when impairment gets the better of a driver. It will require a seasoned felony DUI attorney if you get charged with a
DUI offense, more so if the charge is a felony.

Types of Personal Bankruptcy

Reduction in income, loss of job, divorce, medical expenses due to injury or illness which can cause you days of absence from work, aside from the possibility of you not having insurance coverage, can all result to failure (on your part) to settle your monthly financial obligations like payment of utility bills, mortgage, car loan, personal loans to friends and family, credit card bills, and so forth. Problems, however, do not end here for, before you realize it, your debts would have increased to an amount that would be impossible to settle, considering your financial situation. This will soon be followed by phone calls, emails, text messages and even notices of lawsuits – tactics used by creditors and collecting firms to force you to pay your debts.

If you can no longer meet your obligations to your creditors and lenders, know that you have the ability to free yourself from all or a part of your debts – this is stipulated under the U.S. Constitution. This ability is made possible by filing for bankruptcy, one of the legal means introduced by the government through which individuals and business firms can free themselves from overwhelming debts for a chance at regaining control over their finance. The Bankruptcy Law or Bankruptcy Code was made into law by the U.S. Congress in 1978; it contains various chapters, each designed to address individuals’ and businesses’ specific financial situations.

By the end of 2015, the U.S. Bankruptcy Courts said that 844,495 cases of bankruptcy were filed in the U.S. Under Chapter 7 bankruptcy, the chapter most commonly filed, there were 535,047 cases; Chapter 13 had 301,705 case; and, Chapter 11 had 7,241 cases filed under it.

Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 of the Bankruptcy Code are the specific chapters that you may choose if you need to file for personal bankruptcy. Chapter 7, specifically, allows you to have all or part of your debts discharged, after you repay some of the debts using your liquid assets.

Liquid assets, which are considered as non-exempt assets, are assets that can quickly be converted into cash, such as savings and checking accounts. Besides these, there may also be a need for you to surrender some of your non-exempt properties, like a second house or a vacation house, some jewelry, another car, etc., to a court-appointed trustee who will take charge in the selling of your surrendered properties and in paying your non-dischargeable debts to your creditors.

To be able to file Chapter 7 bankruptcy, however, you will first have to pass a means test. This test is designed to make sure that your income does not exceed the limit set under this chapter. Failing the means test may disqualify you from filing for bankruptcy under Chapter 7, but not for bankruptcy under Chapter 13.

Chapter 13 allows you to design a three-year, or five-year (if allowed by the courts) payment proposal during which time you can settle you debts. This is to make debt payments more affordable for you. Many individuals decide to file under Chapter 13 instead of under chapter 7 because under the latter, they will not be required to surrender any of their assets or properties. If they are operating a business, they will also be allowed to continue operations, a benefit not included under Chapter 7. Chapter 13, however, requires that the amount of your secured debt does not exceed $922,975 and your unsecured debt, not more than $307,675.

As mentioned in a website named Ryan J. Ruehle Attorney at Law, LLC, personal bankruptcy protection can be a powerful tool in preventing creditor harassment, repossession and foreclosure, and other challenges that serious debt problems can cause. To make sure that you understand the process involved in each of these chapters it would be best that you seek the help of a highly-skilled personal bankruptcy lawyer.

Can I Handle a Personal Injury Case on My Own?

It is tempting to take control of everything in your life. This is, after all, a day and age when people want things done as soon as possible—an age of society that thrives and relies on instant gratification. So, yes, it can be tempting to simply take the swiftest and easiest way out of a situation and just get back to your regular, comfortable life – but with legal matters, should you really go through with it on your own?

If you are the plaintiff of a personal injury case – either you were the injured party or the surviving kin of the victim – then it is more than likely that you may be advised to not seek legal representation and take the first settlement you’re offered. Money is money, after all, and actual legal process can only mean complications, right? Wrong.

This is a common misconception that aims to benefit the insurance companies and not the survivor of a horrible incident. According to the website of the lawyers with the Hankey Law Office, insurance companies know that it is statistically more likely that a person who is represented by an attorney has a better chance of receiving a larger and fairer monetary settlement than a person who has had any legal aid at all.

It can be complicated to go through with the legal process but it doesn’t have to go to court. A settlement can be reached without having to face a trial. The only difference is that with reputable and experienced representation, you can be rewarded with not only sufficient compensation to cover your lawyer’s fees but also recompense to cover other financial constraints that you may not have considered such as the loss of wages or even the expenses to cover therapy in order to treat emotional trauma, which can be just as debilitating as physical injury.

Neck and Back Injuries

Neck and back injuries are very common injuries involved in road accidents, and they are also the most prevailing reasons for doctor’s visits. The human neck and back are made of delicately complex structure of muscles, bones, tissues and nerves that can easily be injured during an automobile accident. Often, the injuries include neurologic symptoms which can then radiate to other parts connected to that particular part of the nerve. Furthermore, any injury that affects any part of the spine can cause spasms (or reflex tightening) of the paraspinal muscles that can be very painful and debilitating.

It is estimated that eight out of ten people will suffer from neck or back pain at one point of their lives. There are those who would experience acute neck and back pain can feel abrupt and intense pain that can fortunately subside after a few days of weeks, but there are some types of neck and back injuries that are long-term and even result to chronic pain. According to Russo, Russo & Slania, P.C., those who have suffered from serious neck and back injuries due to the fault of another has the right for compensation and may be able to legally file a personal injury claim.

Whiplash is one of the many injuries that should be checked following an automobile accident. This injury is not immediately seen or felt by the victim, but can show itself hours or days after. Although many victims believe whiplash to be a minor injury, various research have proven that it can be a significantly long-term injury. Victims of automobile accidents should also consider low-impact injuries because soft-tissue injuries are often overlooked.

Many of these injuries require lasting medical treatment and can put a strain on your finances state. This is the main reason why people file for injury claims; awarding compensation is not only to deter motorists from doing similar acts, but also to help cover for medical expenses and other damages that the victim experience. Both economic and non-economic expenses can be covered by the compensation, making medical treatments faster and easier.