A defective skeet throwing machine sliced open the right hand of one of our past clients — a right-handed neurosurgeon. When this machine was first manufactured in France, it had a glitch in it’s operating mechanism. The glitch caused the firing arm to unexpectedly release a target without being triggered by an operator. At the time of the accident, my client assumed he had been injured because the salesman demonstrating the machine at a national skeet tournament in Phoenix had powered-up it up while on display. But after talking with the salesman, it was apparent there may have been a problem with the machine itself. After many months of discovery and heated litigation — including multiple hearings and motions to compel — we learned of the manufacturing defect. Due in part to our lawsuit, the manufacturer notified machine owners worldwide of the problem which may have saved others from serious injury.
Defective product claims are also referred to as “product liability” claims. These types of cases are different than car wrecks or slip-and-fall accidents, which are some the most common cases that personal injury lawyers handle. In a defective product case it helps for a lawyer to have experience in this field. Often times, these cases require extensive research and discovery. A law firm needs to be able to finance such a case by hiring experts, paying for reports, and traveling to take depositions. Fortunately, our firm is in a position to handle defective product cases and we have the experience and know-how these claims require.
Like most cases, a defective product case begins with collecting evidence. An additional and critical step concerns early research. Defective product claims are sometimes well publicized and discussed on the internet. At other times a defect may not be well known to the public but is being discussed among lawyers who handle these types of cases. Other times it is necessary to do original research which can include reviewing United States and International patent applications, reading industry standards and hiring engineers to test the product in question. Aside from these unique factors, the prosecution of a defective product claim includes written discovery, the production of documents, and deposing witnesses.
It is difficult to summarize how a defective products case will be handled since each case is unique. In the example above you can read about a defective skeet machine, however, in another case Chris Parks was liaison and co-lead counsel in a federal multi-district litigation case involving the Norplant Contraceptive Device. These cases all concerned a contraceptive which the plaintiff’s alleged was defective. The Norplant Litigation required extensive document discovery including a national document depository containing a warehouse full of paper that had to be reviewed by experienced lawyers one document at a time. It also required members of the steering committee, of which Chris was one, to attend meetings throughout the country and to speak to other lawyers about how the claims were being handled. Again, each defective product case is different, so we can not summarize what may be required in your case. Your best guide will be an attorney with extensive experience in this field.
If you or a loved one were injured by a defective product, Chris Parks Law can help you get the settlement you deserve. Call (720) 805-1193 to discuss your case with Chris today. We offer free case evaluations.