Hiring a Product Liability Lawyer in Oklahoma

Hiring a Product Liability Lawyer in Oklahoma

When you buy a product, you expect it to function as advertised. Your air fryer should cook delicious, crispy food. Your kid’s new toy should keep them entertained. Your pacemaker should keep your heart ticking. But what if instead, your air fryer starts a fire, your kid’s toy has loose parts, or your pacemaker is faulty? Your home could be damaged, and worse, someone could be injured. That’s when you’d look for a product liability lawyer in Oklahoma.

What Is Product Liability?

Product liability is an area of the law that holds manufacturers, distributors, and others who make and sell products liable for injuries and damages caused by those products. Under product liability law, companies are responsible for damage their products cause, even if they didn’t intend to cause harm and weren’t aware a product was defective. This is known as “strict liability,” and it helps ensure that those who make and sell products take the right precautions to keep the public safe.

Who Can Sue for Product Liability?

Anyone who was injured by a defective product can sue for product liability in Oklahoma. You don’t have to be the person who purchased the product. You could be using it at work, or it could have been given to you as a gift. You don’t even have to be the person who was using the product – injured bystanders can also sue.

If your case fulfills the following three requirements, it’s time to look for a product liability lawyer in Oklahoma:

  1. The product was defective.
  2. It was defective when it left the hands of the defendant.
  3. The defective product caused you significant harm.

A product is “defective” if using it carries a risk that would be unacceptable to an ordinary consumer or if it has a risk of harm that outweighs its benefits. You’ll usually need to show that you were using the product as it was intended to be used, and that you hadn’t altered it in any way. (If these two things aren’t true, you probably won’t be able to prove that it was a product defect that caused your injury and not your own actions.)

Types of Product Liability

Product liability can be categorized into several types that involve different parties and legal claims.

Failure to Warn

Do you ever wonder why some products have warnings that seem obvious? There’s a reason microwave meals say “Caution! Food will be hot after heating!”: failure to warn. This type of product liability happens when manufacturers or sellers don’t give enough warning about the potential risks associated with the use of their products. Not providing proper instructions about how to use a product can also fall under this category – which may be why your microwave meal always instructs you to remove the plastic film, too.

Design Defects

Product defects refer to flaws or imperfections in the design, manufacturing, or marketing of a product that make it unreasonably dangerous for its intended use. These defects can occur at various stages of production and distribution and can result in hazards even if you use the product as intended. If a product’s design is dangerous or likely to malfunction, the designers may be liable for any injuries that result from its flaws.

Manufacturing Defects

If a product’s design is safe, but it was manufactured poorly, the manufacturer may be liable for subsequent injuries. Manufacturing defects happen during the production process when a product deviates from its intended design, making it unsafe for use. Unlike design defects, which are inherent flaws in the product's design, manufacturing defects typically only affect a portion of the products and may not be present in all units.

Examples of Product Liability

Product liability cases can arise in various industries and involve a wide range of products.

Pharmaceutical Products

Pharmaceutical product liability cases often involve harmful side effects or inadequate warnings associated with prescription or over-the-counter medications. For example, Purdue Pharma was successfully sued for OxyContin’s contribution to the opioid epidemic, and for deceptively marketing the drug as less susceptible to addiction.

Medical Devices

Product liability issues in the medical device industry can stem from defects in design, manufacturing, or instructions for use. A manufacturer might use poor-quality materials or harmful chemicals, or assemble the device wrong. Some of the most common medical devices involved in these cases include:

  • Contraceptives
  • Diagnostic equipment
  • Heart defibrillators
  • Hip implants
  • Implants
  • Pacemakers
  • Prosthetics
  • Stents

Food Products

Food product liability cases often involve contamination, mislabeling, or other defects that cause illness or injury to consumers. The most common cases involve:

  • Food poisoning and foodborne illness
  • Foreign objects in food
  • Failure to warn

In a recent example, a family is suing Costco for $200,000 after they got sick from worms in a seafood item. Incorrect labeling is also common: All food labels must include a full list of ingredients, plus warnings about allergies and temperature.

Children’s Products

Defective design or manufacturing flaws in children’s products can lead to accidents or injuries. This type of case is all too common and often involves clothing and toys, including:

  • Strangulation hazards from drawstrings
  • Flammable clothing
  • Lead in buttons, snaps, and zippers
  • Choking hazards from small parts
  • Cuts and lacerations from sharp toy parts
  • Dangerous playground equipment

Vehicles and Other Machinery

Product liability claims related to vehicles and machinery can arise from defects in design, manufacturing, or inadequate warnings. These products can cause serious injuries like broken bones, amputations, and even wrongful death, leading to serious lawsuits. The most common examples are:

  • Defects in vehicle parts that lead to auto accidents
  • Defects in industrial equipment that injure workers
  • Failure to provide proper instructions on operation

Should You Hire a Product Liability Lawyer in Oklahoma?

If you’ve been injured by a defective product, you may have a case thanks to strict liability laws. An experienced Oklahoma product liability lawyer can help you build your case and get the compensation you deserve by:

  • Determining who is liable for your injury
  • Gathering evidence like product specifications and witness testimony
  • Contacting experts like medical professionals, accident reconstruction specialists, and engineers and designers
  • Determining how much compensation you’re owed, including lost wages and pain and suffering
  • Negotiating with insurance companies for maximum compensation
  • Fighting for you in court if necessary
  • Handling all legal proceedings and ensuring your rights are protected

The Bottom Line

Determining who is responsible for a defective product can be tricky, and the manufacturer or designer isn’t going to make it easy for you. On top of that, they have high-powered insurance companies with millions of dollars ready to fight your claim. But if their product had a defect, the law is likely on your side. It’s important to hire an Oklahoma product liability lawyer who is experienced with these cases – like the Oklahoma Injury Guy. Contact us for a free case evaluation to see if you have a claim.