Products liability refers to fault assigned to designers, manufacturers and distributors of defective goods that cause harm to consumers or any other entity, as long as that product was loaned, given or used lawfully. Although products are generally thought of as tangible goods, products liability can extend to intangibles including gas products, pets, real estate, and certain writings (such as maps and charts). In addition, products liability law may reach any or all parties along the chain of manufacture of any product for damage caused by that product.
Parties that can be held liable in a products liability case include:
- The designer of the product;
- The manufacturer of that products component parts;
- The firm or person that assembles that product;
- The wholesaler; and
- The retail store owner (at the bottom of the chain).
If you have suffered harm or injury from using a defective product, speak with our Las Vegas products liability attorney at Eric Roy Law Firm. We can go over your case with you and let you know our honest assessment.
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Basis of Liability
Products liability claims can be based on strict liability, negligence or breach of warranty of fitness. Product liability cases are strict liability offenses, which mean that liability does not depend on how careful a defendant was. A defendant can be liable simply by showing that the product is defective. It is does not matter whether the manufacturer or supplier exercised extreme care. As long as a defect is present that caused harm, then he or she will be liable for it.
In Nevada, a Plaintiff must prove that the product is defective in some way to succeed on a products liability theory.
Generally, there are three types of product defects that incur liability in manufacturers and suppliers:
- Design defects: Design defects are inherent; they exist before the product is manufactured. In Nevada, design defects are treated as strict liability torts. In Nevada, strict liability holds sellers responsible for any of the defects in a product that has caused harm to a consumer or user.
- Manufacturing defects: Products can still contain defects even though great care was taken in the preparing and marketing of the product. Liability in defective products can be difficult to prove in some cases.
- Defects in marketing: Manufacturers who fail to warn of a product's dangerous characteristic, hidden dangers or to provide adequate instructions can be held liable. A warning must be clear, conspicuously placed and easy to understand.
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