The damages you have suffered from a defective product may be minor or severe, but consumers have the right to expect safe products and products with adequate warning. Seeking compensatory damages for your injury holds companies involved with product distribution accountable for producing safe products.
If you have been injured by a defective product you may file a lawsuit and seek damages. State laws govern the type of damages you receive, however, every state allows compensatory damages, or damages that compensate you for the losses due to your injury.
Examples of compensable damages include:
- Past medical costs
- Future medical costs
- Emergency room bills
- Past lost wages and loss of future earnings
- Pain and suffering
Who is Responsible in a Defective Product Lawsuit?
Product liability law usually places legal responsibility on sellers and manufacturers of defective products. The law determines who or what entity is legally responsible for your injury in a defective product lawsuit.
Responsible parties may include:
- The manufacturer of the product
- The manufacturer of the product’s parts
- The wholesaler of the product
- The seller from which you bought the product
Joint and Several Liability
It is to your benefit to list each potential defendant in you defective product claim. Then defendants are then fully liable individually and liable in combination with the other defendants. This is called “joint and several liability.”
Under joint and several liability, the winning plaintiff is ensured compensation and it is up to the defendants to determine how to divide the cost. The plaintiff will not receive more than the amount decided by the court, but he or she is more likely to get the full amount deserved. There may be a case where one party is not able to compensate you for all the damages you seek, but if there are multiple defendants who are jointly and severally liable then your compensation will come, albeit from a few different pockets.
States have different rules regarding joint and several liability. Your products liability attorney will help you navigate your state’s laws and identify the potential defendants in your case. Look for an experienced lawyer in our database of attorneys for help in filing a Defective Product Lawsuit if you do not already have legal counsel.