Can Manufacturers be Sued for Defective Products?

Defective products are something companies churn out every now and then. Even established manufacturers could be guilty of rolling out products into the market that are not fit for consumer usage. Thankfully, some manufacturers are proactive enough to realize early that they made a blunder and should recall their products, making sure product users are not affected much. However, there are instances when it gets a bit too late. What if you are at the receiving end of a defective product? Can manufacturers be sued for defective products? And what are your legal resorts if you were injured by a defective product? Let’s find out.

A Brief Intro to a Recall

Before we delve further into the topic, let’s understand ‘recall’ a bit. A recall is basically a manufacturer issuing a request to buyers to return a defective or potentially unsafe product. The defects could not just potentially harm consumers but also put the maker at the risk of legal action. In some cases, manufacturers recall their bad products by themselves or after a regulatory board, such as the FDA in America, requests the producer to do so. If a company, after becoming aware of its product’s defect, doesn’t issue a recall voluntarily and continues selling the product, a government agency could issue the recall on its own.

Product Defect Types

There are primarily three product defect categories to know: design defect, manufacturing defect, and marketing defect.

Design defect, as the name indicates, pertains to the product’s design. A manufacturing defect is a defect that that occurred during the production of a product, which is the stage after design. A marketing defect is a product not having adequate usage instructions or warning labels that bring to light the risks associated with using the product.

Knowing the exact nature of the defect is important since that helps determine whether the manufacturer could be directly blamed or if there are other parties that need to be made accountable too.

Recalls and Manufacturer Liability

A recall doesn’t necessarily mean the manufacturer becomes liable. In the court of law, the plaintiff should still present evidence that the defect actually caused injury. The plaintiff would invariably need the services of a product liability attorney to establish the various elements attached to the claim.

Also, it doesn’t mean legal action cannot be taken against a manufacturer if it issues a recall by itself. The liable manufacturer would, in fact, still have to legally compensate for damages and injuries caused by the product malfunction. But if the manufacturer manages to prove that the plaintiff received recall notice directly and the recall warned the plaintiff of the product’s defect, potential hazards, and safety concerns, proving manufacturer liability toward injuries would become difficult. Kindly note, the recall should have been “direct” and not directed toward all consumers.

 

References:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Product_recall

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Product_defect

How the Texas Criminal Courts Work

Criminal court is the last place most of think we will ever end up. Still, it is a part of our judiciary system, and understanding how it all works can only benefit us whether or not we are a part of any criminal activity, witness any breach of the law, or know of anyone otherwise involved. Below we take a closer look at how the Texas criminal courts work.

How the Criminal Courts Work in Texas

As is the case in many other states, the state of Texas criminal courts system is made up of a group of courts with different responsibilities working together. To make sense of it all, we will first look at the structure of the courts’ systems, and then at the judicial limitations of each type of court within that system.

The Structure of the Texas Court Systems

The two main groups of courts in Texas include the federal and the Texas state courts system. As far as the Texas state courts are concerned, there is the Texas Supreme Court and the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals. There are different kinds of courts within the Court of Criminal Appeals there is a structure of the Texas Courts of Appeals which includes the Texas district and county courts. The county courts include the Texas justice and municipal courts.

The Judicial Limitations of the Texas Criminal Courts

Currently, the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals number 14 in total as they cover the same number of districts (one court per district). With the exception of death penalty cases, all criminal and civil court cases that are appealed are done through one of the 14 criminal appeals courts in the relevant district. Within these 14 districts, there is a total of 420 district trial courts which consider both criminal and civil cases.

In addition to district courts, there is also the Texas County Courts which includes the Texas Justice Courts and Texas Municipal Courts. The Justice Court is essentially a small claims court which hears criminal cases with misdemeanor fines, as well as civil cases not exceeding US$10,000 in fines and some designated functions. The Municipal Court is a local trial court involving fines only criminal cases, a limited number of civil cases, and municipal ordinance violation cases.

Often, the Constitutional and Statutory Trial Courts at the state level handle the largest number of cases. The Constitutional Trial Courts handle appeals cases from the lower courts, including those dealing with misdemeanor cases involving jail time or fines in excess of US$500, as well as cases for juveniles, and civil actions from US$200.00 to US$10,000. Statutory Trial Courts, on the other hand, handles a wide range of appellate, civil, and criminal cases that arise. Importantly, there is a jurisdictional limit of US$1,000,000 in the County Courts in Cameron County.

Contact Us Today for Quality Legal Representation

Admittedly, even with the information above, interpretation of state laws (criminal and otherwise) and navigating the associate court system can prove to be difficult without the assistance of trained legal professionals. Thankfully, we can help. We have a team of competent lawyers for criminal defense in Fort Worth, Texas. If you or your loved ones live in or around the Fort Worth, Texas area and have a criminal case pending, then contact our offices and team of lawyers today. You may contact us via email, telephone, or any of the other official contact information on this site. We are waiting to hear from you!

 

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Accident Types Seen in Injury Claims

There are many different ways you can be injured in this world. You could fall down a set of stairs, slip on a spill, or be involved in a vehicle wreck. No matter what type of injury you’ve sustained there are some common types of accidents that lead to injury claims.

It’s these types of accidents that seem to involve another person’s negligence as a contributing factor as to the cause of the accident. If you’re thinking about filing a personal injury claim for an accident you’ve been hurt in, you may want to speak with accident and injury lawyers.

They can better advise you as to whether your accident qualifies you to file a claim, and they will be able to give you an idea of what your claim is worth. They can also walk you through the process of filing an injury claim. Below, see the accident types that are often seen in injury claims.

Common Personal Injury Case Types

Car Accidents – Auto wrecks cause a vast majority of injuries in this country. Although many safety measures have been put in place to make cars and roads safer, we still continue to see car accident injuries every day.

Most auto wrecks are caused by human error. That means that if all drivers took driving seriously there would be a lot less people hurt out there. The fact is, many people are reckless and careless when they drive, and it’s those negligent people who can be held accountable when they injure others.

Truck Accidents – Similar to auto wrecks, truck crashes are common causes of injuries. Truck accidents are a little different because there’s often a trucking company who could also be responsible for an injured party’s losses if it’s discovered they were somewhat involved in the accident.

Truckers may feel pressure to drive too many hours, or they may not have received proper training, making the trucking company also to blame for an accident.

Motorcycle Wrecks – Motorcycle injuries can be caused by a variety of reasons, but often because other drivers are distracted. They don’t notice motorcyclists because they aren’t paying attention to the road.

Medical Malpractice – It’s unthinkable to imagine a doctor or medical professional that doesn’t take your health seriously. For the most part medical practitioners care a great deal for their patients, and they do everything possible to improve their health, not harm them.

Nevertheless, doctors are humans and they are capable of mistakes. Worse than just a simple mistake, they can also be capable of negligence. If you were harmed because of substandard medical treatment, you may be able to file a claim against the doctor that harmed you.

Product Liability – We all buy and use products every day and we trust the makers of those products to create something safe and useful. We also trust the labels on the food and devices that we use, because if mislabeled we could be harmed.

If a product does not meet the safety standards, either because of poor design, manufacturing, or labeling, you may be able to sue the manufacturer of the product.

Wrongful Death – The death of a loved one is always difficult to bear but your grief can be magnified if you discover that their death could have been averted if not for another person’s careless behavior. If your loved one died in an accident and negligence has been proven to be the cause, you can seek justice and damages for your family.

Compensation for a wrongful death claim is meant to help you recover the losses you’ve sustained because of the unexpected death of your loved one.

Premises Liability – All property owners have a duty to maintain safe premises for guests and visitors. If there are hazards on their property that could harm someone, they are responsible for securing those hazards or placing warnings around the dangerous area.

If these property owners fail to take your safety seriously, they can be held responsible legally for your injuries and financial losses.

Fault in Commercial Trucking Wrecks

When you suffer serious injuries after being involved in a collision with a tractor-trailer, you may be entitled to seek compensation for your losses, particularly if your wreck was caused by the negligent actions of another.

There are a number of different entities who could have contributed to the cause of your accident, all of which should be held accountable for their actions. Continue reading to learn more about some of the parties who are most commonly found liable for the damage caused in a trucking accident.

When the Trucker is Liable

More often than not, the driver of the big rig that struck you will be found culpable for your losses. This will typically be due to the trucker engaging in unsafe driving practices such as the following:

  • Distracted driving – This occurs when the driver of a motor vehicle is distracted by something other than the road. This could include changing the radio station, texting or using a cell phone, using a navigation system, reaching for a beverage, or any other distraction.
  • Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol – When someone gets behind the wheel after consuming enough alcohol to impair their driving, or takes illicit drugs of any kind, they should not be operating a vehicle. Not only can they cause serious accidents, but those who drive while under the influence are subject to criminal charges.
  • Aggressive driving – If a driver is weaving in and out of traffic without using a turn signal, failing to stop at red lights or stop signs, following too closely, exhibiting signs of road rage, or cutting other drivers off they are considered to be driving aggressively and increase the risk of collisions occurring due to these driving patterns.
  • Fatigued driving – Any driver who is too tired to operate a vehicle safely, but does so anyway can be cited for driving while fatigued.

In some cases, the aforementioned types of driving are not just the responsibility of the truck driver, but rather the trucking company who employs the trucker. Read on to learn more about how trucking companies could be partially responsible for causing your accident and subsequent injuries.

Trucking Company Violations

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) provides regulations that must be followed by all trucking companies across the United States. These regulations often include a mandatory number of days off for truck drivers and a specific number of hours they need to have off between shifts.

This is usually no more than seven consecutive days of work and a minimum of 13 hours off between shifts. When a trucking company violates the regulations, they can be found partially liable for your losses if the truck driver was driving while fatigued after being overscheduled or driving aggressively in order to meet the trucking companies unrealistic deadlines.

Other Parties that May be to Blame

Apart from the truck driver and the trucking company that employs them, anyone else involved in the safety and maintenance of the tractor trailer itself could have a claim brought against them if their irresponsible actions caused the truck to be unsafe.

This could include but is not limited to cargo loaders, safety inspectors, vehicle parts manufacturers, technicians, the owner of the truck, and/or any independent contractors who might’ve been involved in shipments, receiving or otherwise working with the company.

Speak with a Seasoned Truck Accident Lawyer

If you’ve endured catastrophic injuries after being involved in a crash with an 18-wheeler but you aren’t sure where to turn, a lawyer for truck accidents can help you. Your attorney will conduct a thorough investigation to determine who should be held accountable for your damages.

Any respectable law firm will even offer you a complimentary case review before taking on your case so that you have a better idea of what’s to come should you choose to proceed with a personal injury claim against the at-fault party.