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Hurt by a Defective Product? Our Lawyers Can Help

In certain circumstances, various businesses connected to a product may be held liable for injuries when an item is defective. These businesses include manufacturers, wholesalers, suppliers, retailers, marketing companies, and other parties affiliated with a product’ creation and sale.

Typically, these parties are required to ensure that the products they make and sell are reasonably safe for consumers’ intended use. This is why so many products come with instructions, safety features, and warnings. If a business fails to uphold this duty, and you are hurt because of a defective product, then you may be able to hold that party liable. If you can prove another business was responsible for a product defect and your injuries, then you may recover compensation for your losses.

To learn more about your rights after being hurt because of an unsafe product, call Emerald City Law Group’s Seattle product liability lawyers at 206-973-0407. You can also contact us online to schedule a free initial consultation.

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Product Liability Law in Washington

If you live or were hurt in Washington, then a claim related to a defective product is likely governed by the Washington Product Liability Act (WPLA). This law provides several theories of liability, which are unique reasons why you can hold another party responsible for a defective product. It is also your exclusive remedy for the harm caused by a defective product unless you bring a claim in federal court.

After suffering an injury due to a dangerous product, you should contact a Washington defective product attorney to discuss your legal options, including filing a product liability claim against the manufacturer or retailer.

Types of Product Defects

A product can be defective in many ways. However, a majority of defects boil down to one of three categories:

  • Design Defects: This means that every product in question is affected by poor and unsafe design. The intended design of the product itself makes the product inherently dangerous and risky to use.
  • Manufacturing Defects: While a design defect affects each product, a manufacturing defect impacts only a portion of the products. A manufacturing defect means something went wrong during the creation and assembly process, and the final product did not adhere to the design. This variation is what made the product unsafe.
  • Marketing Defects/Failure to Warn: Certain products are inherently dangerous even if they are designed as safely as possible. For example, household cleaners may be dangerous to ingest, and power tools can cause physical injuries. However, when companies manufacture and sell these items, they must provide clear instructions and adequate warnings to diminish the potential risks. Without these warnings, the product is considered defective.

When you are injured due to a dangerous product, you may not know how or why the product was defective. This is something your legal team can learn through the discovery process that takes place during a lawsuit and through an independent investigation. This is why it is important to hire a Seattle product liability lawyer after being injured by a product.

Commonly Defective Products

At Emerald City Law Group, our Seattle product liability lawyers are prepared to handle any product liability claim related to a wide range of products. Some of the most common defective products include:

  • Prescription and over-the-counter drugs
  • Medical devices
  • Children’s toys
  • Vehicles
  • Clothing
  • Nursery and infant products
  • Playground equipment
  • Household appliances
  • Household chemicals

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Ways to May Hold Manufacturers Responsible for Defective Products

If your incident took place in Washington, you must follow the WPLA regarding how you bring a lawsuit. Washington law gives you four ways in which you can argue another party is liable for your injuries:

  • Negligence/Risk-Utility Test (RCW 7.72.030(1)(a)): Under this theory, you allege that the manufacturer was negligent. Your attorney will strive to prove that the possibility of injuries was a greater cost than the company would have expended devising an alternative, safer design for the product. This cause of action primarily focuses on whether an alternative design was practical and feasible.
  • Inadequate Warnings or Instructions (RCW 7.72.030(1)(b)-(c)): Your Seattle product liability attorney may be able to prove that the manufacturer or retailer failed to include all the necessary warnings or instructions regarding the product, which caused you to be hurt.
  • Breach of Warranty (RCW 7.72.030(2)): Your attorney may be able to hold another party liable under contract law. Warranties are considered promises that businesses implicitly or explicitly make regarding a product. If your lawyer can show that the other party made a certain promise, the product failed to hold up that promise, and the breach caused your injury, then you may receive compensation.
  • Consumer Expectations (RCW 7.72.030(3)): Your attorney may show the court that an ordinary consumer would not consider the product sufficiently safe. This does not require your lawyer to prove whether an alternative design would have been cost-efficient for the business.

Statute of Limitations for Product Liability Claims

If a defective product harmed you or a loved one, you should speak with a Seattle product liability lawyer as soon as possible. You have a limited amount of time to file a lawsuit. Under the WPLA, you have up to three years from the time you discover or reasonably should have discovered that you were injured and the cause of your injuries. However, in various circumstances, you may have longer. The best thing to do is talk with a lawyer right away.

Emerald City Law Group Is Here to Help

Our product liability attorneys at Emerald City Law Group understand how challenging and frustrating these situations can be. A defective product can cause serious injuries to you or a loved one. While you focus on getting better and returning to work, and your normal life, the last thing that you want to do is deal with a lawsuit. We are here to handle the legal process for you.

If you believe a dangerous product caused your injuries, call us to talk about your situation. We will thoroughly investigate how you were injured and actively participate in the legal discovery process to gather as much evidence as possible of the other party’s fault. We will use this evidence to fight for you to receive full and fair compensation.

To discuss a potential product liability claim, call 206-973-0407 or contact us online to schedule a free consultation.