Who is Responsible for a Defective Product?

If you’ve been injured by a defective product and wish to file a claim to recover for your injuries, one of the first steps in the legal process is identifying which people and companies might be liable, in order to name them as defendants in your personal injury claim. However, identifying all of the parties can be complex. As a general rule of thumb, you want to include any and all parties involved in the “chain of distribution” of the defective product.

The following is an overview of the potential parties in a product liability case:

  • Manufacturer – The chain of distribution starts with the manufacturer. Be sure to include any additional parties involved in the manufacture, design, and marketing of the defective product. For example, if your claim involves a manufacturing defect, you may want to include any quality-control engineers used in the manufacturing process. If your claim involves a design defect, you could potentially include any design consultants used by the manufacturer. If your claim involves a failure to warn or provide adequate instructions, you could include any parties responsible for writing the instructions for the defective product.
  • Retailer – While the retail store where you purchased the defective product may not have manufactured it, the retailer may still be responsible for selling you a product that caused your injury.
  • Wholesaler or distributor – In the middle of manufacturer and retailer, there may be a wide variety of wholesalers, distributors, suppliers, and other so-called “middlemen.” Each and all are considered components of the chain of distribution of the defective product, which makes them potentially liable.

If you have been injured by a defective product, request a free consultation with a Pennsylvania personal injury attorney at Metzger Wickersham today. We can thoroughly investigate your product liability claim to ensure that all parties are held responsible.

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