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Establishing Liability in Florida Defective Product Lawsuits

When individuals purchase or use products, they naturally expect the product to work as advertised and, if used as directed, not cause the person harm. If someone is injured by a dangerous product, Florida’s product liability laws allow victims to recover for their damages. Under Florida law, manufacturers, retailers, and wholesalers of a defective product may all be defendants in a product liability lawsuit.

Generally, there are two main theories that a Florida plaintiff may pursue against a defendant: negligence, and strict liability. Claims often arise from design defects, manufacturing defects, label defects, breach of warranty claims, fraud, and misrepresentation. The negligence theory allows Florida product liability injury victims to recover damages if they establish that they suffered injuries because the defendant was negligent in some aspect of the design, production, or marketing of the defective product. Under a strict liability theory, a Florida injury victim may successfully recover compensation against a culpable party if they can establish that the product caused the plaintiff’s injuries because it was unreasonably dangerous. The law does not require plaintiffs in these cases to prove negligence or carelessness.

Design defect claims allege that the inherent design of a product makes it unsafe for its intended purpose. Manufacturing defect claims arise when an injury victim concedes that the product’s design is safe, but some error in manufacturing occurred that renders the product unsafe. Finally, defective warning claims typically arise when a manufacturer fails to warn consumers and users about the inherent dangers of a device or product.

Florida product liability lawsuits are often complicated and can involve many challenges related to identifying culpable defendants, refuting affirmative defenses, and apportioning liability. Plaintiffs who wish to hold a manufacturer liable for a defective product must be able to prove that the device was faulty when it entered the “stream of commerce.” For example, recently, an appellate court issued an opinion in a case where a plaintiff’s fingers were severely injured by a machine that clamps metal tubes. The plaintiff filed a lawsuit against the machine’s manufacturer, alleging that the clamp malfunctioned because of the product’s defective design, and that it was negligently manufactured. The company moved to dismiss the case arguing that the plaintiff’s employer used a different company to alter the clamp, and therefore they were not strictly liable. The court ultimately concluded that the product was not defective when it entered the stream of commerce, and thus the defendants were not liable.

Have You Suffered Injuries Because of a Defective Product?

If you or someone you love has suffered injuries because of a defective product, you should contact the Florida product liability attorneys at Friedman, Rodman & Frank, P.A. The attorneys at our law firm have years of experience handling various types of Florida product liability lawsuits. We have successfully recovered compensation on behalf of clients for injuries they suffered from defective medical devices, machines, consumer products, cars, and tires. Our attorneys appreciate that every client, claim, and lawsuit is different, and we take an individualized approach to ensure that our clients have the best possible outcome. Contact our office at 877-448-8585 to schedule a free initial consultation with a lawyer at our firm.

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