Understand the Grounds for the Claims in Product Liability Cases

So you’ve just bought your new car for which you’ve spent thousands of dollars on. It’s a brand new model, straight from the dealership. However, you take it out for a spin and your brake malfunctions leading to a terrible accident. It’s clearly the manufacturer’s fault but what can you do in this case? Luckily for you, this is the perfect representation of a product liability case, which is one of the most lucrative fields of expertise in the entire law. However, filing a claim of the kind requires thorough knowledge of different laws as well as a lot of experience on handling the case itself because it would commonly include a jury which you’d have to convince.

File Product Liability Claims

It’s worth noting that as per the current legislation on the territory of the province of Ontario, you can file product liability claims under two separate premises – Contractual and Common law.

Filing a claim under the grounds provided to you by the Contractual law could be incredibly beneficial. The main reason for which is that you are essentially implying a breach of contract which could lead to some serious compensations. Apart from all of the injuries, you’d also be capable of getting thoroughly compensated for the vehicle itself. This is due to the fact that aside from the regular duty required by the common law, there is also an additional duty of care implied by the sales-purchase contract.

Information Disclosure

This means that the seller is legally obligated to disclose all sorts of information regarding particular defects in the object of the sale. Hidden defects, as in this case, are also grounds for compensatory claims, regardless of whether the seller knew about them or no. In the first case, the claim is going to be dully civil while in the second, depending on the particular situation it could even get to criminal prosecution. However, the case in point which is subjected to personal injury law is a part of the civil law and there aren’t going to be any criminal charges. This is due to the fact that product liability cases seek monetary compensation and not to legally punish the perpetrator through a penalty, provided by the criminal legislation.

It’s also worth noting that unlike seeking reparations under common law provisions, doing so by claiming responsibility set forth through the contractual law, you can exceed the boundaries offered by common law. In any case, the claims which are filed for product liability are going to be extremely high, especially if they involve a fatality. The main reason for this is that they are usually targeted towards influential companies with billions of dollars in capital.

Having a personal injury lawyer represents your rights or the rights of a company are equally important because of the technicalities of the case. With complex tort laws and navigating through the legal jargon isn’t exactly easy.

How Do Personal Injury Lawyers Deal With Product Liability Claims

As curious as this might sound to you, claims based on the premises of product liability are likely to be amongst the most profitable ones in the field of personal injury law. Even though the majority of cases would be directed towards insurance resolving because the manufacturer is likely to be insured against risks of the kind, the compensations could be tremendous. One of the most common cases is when a vehicle malfunctions as a result of a technical or mechanical defect and this leads to a fatality. Who is held accountable? Who can file for damages and compensation?

As per the Family Act of Ontario, the successors of the deceased could file a claim for the damages. There are quite a few specifications that should be taken into consideration. The first thing that you need to account for is that you could only file for the physical damages that have been incurred. These are the so called pecuniary damages and their proving is entirely based on objective grounds such as documents, contracts and receipts. This is most commonly regarding the medical expenses that the successors would have to pay for the treatment of the deceased. The successors are not entitled to claim non-pecuniary damages on behalf of the deceased. The solution is incredibly spot on and fair as there is no way to determine their amount. However, the interesting part is that they could claim damages as a result of a loss of a loved one. These are the damages that are usually the highest and the courts are inclined towards providing the claimants with maximum compensations for them.

Furthermore, claims of this particular kind are usually aimed towards huge corporations, which mean the court even more inclined to rule on a high compensation. Of course, this is rather subjective but the practice on cases of similar type is in the same direction. However, you might need to talk about the case with a legal professional to culminate the case.

In any case, a product liability claim could also be filed towards the reseller but in the majority of cases he is likely to deny responsibility. Of course, it’s also possible that the entire case gets resolved prior to reaching the court and a lot of the times it would. The result would be a fair settlement for the successors which satisfies their needs. The defendant, on the other hand, is going to save a lot of money on expenses for attorneys and court taxes if he is convinced that he can’t win the case. It’s a relatively win-win situation as it’s maximizing the compensation for the claimant while simultaneously minimizing the expenses for the defendant.

In any case, there is a lot of practice on this matter and the rulings are skewing towards the claimants in the majority of the civil lawsuits of this particular kind.

Does Product Liability Come under Corporate Law?

The area of personal injury law is incredibly vast. This means that personal injury lawyers could take a variety of cases to court simply because the causes are numerous. Nevertheless, one of the most common and yet particularly interesting causes is product liability. While a lot of safety standards have been integrated in the manufacturing business niche, it is still possible and actually rather common for products to be manufactured with defects. This particular defect can potentially be the cause of a serious health hazard or an accident, which is something that has to have the necessary legal attention. In fact, the state laws of the province of Ontario are quite strict when it comes to product liability. As a matter of fact, product liability can derive from two separate legal sources.

Product liability based on negligence

This is a trademark for corporate law. It is complicated but it also is stable merit for filing a successful compensatory claim. The main aspect of the personal negligence lies within the so called duty of care. This particular duty requires a certain behavior which should be pursuant to the Ontario’s Provincial regulations. However, a case of this particular kind could in fact be very hard to win in court because it requires a great deal of proving. It should undoubtedly demonstrate the particular lack of manifestation of this behavior, thus breaching the duty of care.

At the same time it’s possible that the behavior does not fall within the legal regulations set forth by the acts of Ontario. If that’s the case, we once again have a breach and it could just as well serve as merit for a compensatory claim. This is one of the important considerations that you need to have a reliable personal injury lawyer in Mississauga and Toronto looking into all aspects of defamation and liability regulations.

Contractual Law sets forth product liability

This covers the majority of cases in the province of Ontario. When a person acquires ownership of a particular item, he would most commonly strike some sort of agreement in the form of a contract. The condition of the object should be a part of the contract in order to determine the boundaries of product liability.

If the product fails to comply with the conditions which are set forth in the contract or is of lesser quality and thus causes damages to the acquiring party, the vendor would be legally responsible. This also covers hidden defects, which is one of the most common cases in relation with product liability. Basically, the only thing that the lawyer has to do is to prove that the product was indeed faulty and this was caused by the manufacturer or the vendor. And they also have to prove that this particular defect caused the injuries which are being filed for. This will be enough to ensure a quick and effective court procedure.

Specifications Surrounding A Product Liability Claim

If you’ve suffered an injury or your own property has been damaged as a consequence of a faulty product, you are entitled to seek compensation from the manufacturer and from the store that sold it. However, depending on your particular injuries, you’d be able to get compensation for financial losses, pain and suffering as well as for the medical costs that you had to spend to recover.

The first thing that you need to check is whether or not the product comes with a warranty. If it does, you might be eligible for a refund, provided the warranty is guarantee or express. However, you should make sure your eligibility and go ahead and contact the manufacturer or the store and inform them about your current problem.

Nevertheless, it gets more interesting and far more complicated if you’re not covered with an express warranty. Even though the manufacturer or the store is going to insist on the fact that you aren’t explicitly covered by warranty, you’re still entitled to seek reparations and you should start by contacting the store which sold you the item. There is a specific piece of legislation which sets forth clear provisions for situations of the kind and it’s called the Sale of Goods Act. It poses three particular obligations to store owners in regard with the products they sell, regardless if they are covered by a warranty or not.

The first thing to note is that stores are legally obligated under the aforementioned legislative act to sell products which are perfectly fit to serve their main designation. This means that the item you have bough has to function the way it was intended.

The second legal obligation is that the sold goods have to fit the description which is provided by catalogue. However, if you’ve purchased the item based on a sample that you’ve liked, the item that you receive has to correspond to the same quality of the item in the description or the sample that you’ve used.

The third rule is rather similar to the previous one and it requires that item purchased based on samples or descriptions have to be in fit condition to be sold. If it is not and there is damage to the individual, it holds merit under tort laws.

Provided that you fall within one of these categories, you are perfectly capable and properly entitled to cancel the contract that you’ve entered into and to receive a full scale refund. You should inform them about the Sale of Goods Act provided they fail to understand the situation and refuse to give you the compensation or refund that you are legally entitled to. However, if that doesn’t work you should thoroughly consider taking the case to trial as it’s a pretty straightforward scenario. Talk with an experienced legal service that deals with product liability cases and they will be able to accurately evaluate your case.

Steps of Filing A Claim Against The Manufacturer Of A Faulty Product

Product liability cases are rather versatile and the main reason for this is that you can sue both the store and in certain cases the manufacturer as well. This is, however, going to require some research and investigation of the matter in order to be well prepared for what might come. In any case, your main intention after sustaining damages as a result of the usage of a faulty product should be the store. However, there are certain situations in which you might be entitled to filing against the manufacturer directly.

Sale of Goods Act

The first thing you’d want to do is to contact the manufacturer and make sure that he is aware of your problems. Talking to the customer service would shed some light over the matter. The next scenario might be in case the store has absolutely refused to provide you with any kind of refund and you want to explore your options prior to taking the case to trial. Reaching out to the manufacturer might save you some troubles. The third scenario might involve you purchasing the item outside of the store. This is the most common case when items are purchased second hand. If that’s the case, there are absolutely no strings attached between you and the store and the manufacturer is your only potential source of compensation. The Sale of Goods Act doesn’t pose any liability for the store if this is the hypothesis that you fall within.

If the store doesn’t want to compensate you for the damages you’ve sustained and the manufacturer isn’t compliant enough to provide you with the necessary compensation, you might want to take charge and start fighting for your rights. You can start a civil lawsuit with the intention of claiming sheer negligence in the manufacture of the product. You can pursuit this in the Small Claims Court without having to hire a lawyer if the damages are not substantial. You are going to have to prove that there was no excuse for a reasonable care in the design and this has resulted in an evident injury to you as a user or to your respective property.

You should also be aware of the fact that the court is going to find the manufacturer responsible if there was even an unintended defect in the way that the faulty product was manufactured. This is a fair solution as it provides sufficient protection for the regular person. There is also the chance of negligent misrepresentation in the cases in which the retailer or the manufacturer distributed misleading information regarding the use or the safety of the faulty product and this cause the customer to sustain some sort of damages personally or to his property.

Talk with a lawyer dealing with personal injury cases in Toronto or even in Brampton and the legal professional will be able to assist you through the process of claim compensation.