Las Vegas Product Defect Attorneys
Product liability lawyers protecting consumers injured by dangerous products
We all use consumer products every day. From our coffeemakers to our cars to our laptops, we rely on these products for food, travel, and work. A minor product defect might cause an inconvenience. But a major product defect can cause a devastating tragedy. Defective vehicle parts, medical equipment, and other consumer products lead to thousands of injuries and deaths every year.
Injuries related to defective and dangerous products follow different legal procedures than other types of personal injury claims. Nevada’s product liability laws come into play, with specific deadlines and rules for filing. Talk to the Las Vegas product defect attorneys at Claggett & Sykes Law Firm today for knowledgeable help if you or a loved one were harmed by a dangerous consumer product.
“Everyone here was so helpful and friendly. They actually cared about me and not just the results of my case, which by the way, they knocked out of the park. I would absolutely recommend them to anyone in need of legal assistance.” – Noel L.
What are the types of product defects?
As consumers, we trust the products we use every to be safe, but a defect can turn any product – from kitchen appliances to medications to car parts– into a dangerous one. There are three major types of defects that may cause consumer injury:
- Design defects, which occur when something in the design of the product is unsafe. Design defects make an item inherently dangerous, like a piece of construction equipment designed without a proper machine guard.
- Manufacturing defects, or defects that occur during the assembly or manufacturing of the product. These products may be designed safely, but an error with their manufacturing or assembly makes them unsafe. An example is a piece of machinery dropping metal parts into a batch of candy on an assembly line.
- Marketing defects, which are problems with the way a product is labeled or advertised. These defects include inadequate safety warnings, improper labeling, and insufficient instructions. An example is a child’s toy that fails to warn parents of possible choking hazards.
Any one or combination of these defects can lead to serious injury or even death. Goods that consumers buy and use every day can become the focal points of these product liability lawsuits. Most households contain thousands of consumer products, from electric devices to pieces of furniture, and defects in any of these items can cause serious personal injuries.
This is the main way that product liability claims differ from other personal injury cases. Instead of proving the product’s manufacturer or distributor was negligent, the plaintiff must show the item in question had a defect, and that this defect caused your accident and resulting injuries. The Las Vegas attorneys at Claggett & Sykes Law Firm can provide more guidance.
What are some examples of defective products?
Virtually any type of product can contain a dangerous defect. The nature of the item, however, can determine the associated risks for consumers. A defective vehicle part, for instance, could cause a deadly car accident. Even something small, however, could still cause serious injuries, such as a defective teapot leaking hot water and causing severe burn injuries.
Many serious injuries occur right in the home. Consumer products you trust and rely on could cause a fire, electrocute you, explode, result in chemical burns, or otherwise cause you harm. Unanchored furniture falls on and crushes about 11,000 children each year, and results in the death of almost two dozen more annually. A defective or faulty carbon monoxide monitor can give an entire family CO poisoning, potentially killing them. Chronic CO poisoning has been linked with “long-term damage to [the] brain and… an increased risk of birth defects, strokes, and respiratory issues.”
Over the past few years, we have seen a significant uptick in the number of recalled, dangerous children’s products. Infant sleepers like the Fisher-Price Rock ‘n Play and Boppy Loungers were recalled because children were suffocating to death. Graco strollers were recalled for amputation risk. The federal Subcommittee on Economic and Consumer Policy “released a staff report showing that baby foods are tainted with dangerous levels of toxic heavy metals that endanger infant neurological development and long-term brain function.” Cow milk-based formulas have been linked to deadly necrotizing enterocolitis in premature babies.
Some of the worst types of product liability cases are those involving injured children, not only because children cannot fend for themselves, but because an injury or illness in childhood can permanently affect cognitive and physical development. The most serious child injuries from defective toys and products are:
Scissor lifts and other construction defects
Construction companies use multi-ton machines to create our homes and businesses. When there is a defect in the design or manufacturing of one of these tools, everyone onsite is at risk. Collapsing cranes, falling objects from excavators, faulty boom lifts – each of these machines has the capability to harm or kill multiple people.
For example, we handled numerous product defect cases on behalf of injured construction workers against a scissor lift manufacturer, Skyjack, Inc. In these cases, our clients alleged that one of the scissor lift guardrails was designed in a defective manner where the guardrail would dislodge from the scissor lift while in use. This resulted in multiple workers falling 20 to 30 feet, suffering significant injuries such as multiple broken bones and permanent traumatic brain damage.
Sean Claggett and his team filed claims against Skyjack and the equipment rental companies. An investigation uncovered that Skyjack never tested its guardrails in accordance with industry standards, and the company put incorrect decals on the scissor lift. The decals stated the company had tested the guardrails and that they complied with safety standards. Skyjack was also negligent by failing to recall thousands of defective lifts after it knew of the availability of an alternative design.
Our firm not only received an award for our clients – we also forced Skyjack to change the designs of its lifts, preventing the same accidents from happening in the future on the newly designed machines. Let us help effect change for you, too.
Auto and truck defects
The largest auto parts recall in U.S. history involved defective Takata airbags. The force of their explosion was so great that pieces of hot metal shot out of the airbags and into occupants in the vehicle. Ove the past decade, we have seen cars and trucks recalled for defective seat backs, exploding airbags, defective fuel lines, automatic unintended acceleration and deceleration, and batteries that catch fire while the car is in park.
Claggett & Sykes understands how a defective part can lead to serious, life-long injuries. We recovered over $3 million at trial on behalf of a client who was injured due to a defectively designed parking brake installed on a flatbed tow truck. The design caused the parking brake to lose tension to the point that a flatbed tow truck rolled out of a parking lot, down the street, across traffic, and t-boned our client’s vehicle. At trial we were able to prove that the manufacturer, Navistar, Inc. designed and sold a defective product, and that product caused our client’s injuries.
What are Nevada’s product liability laws?
In Las Vegas, injury victims must follow specific rules to file a defective product claim. Nevada’s product liability laws mandate why and when consumers can file lawsuits against manufacturers and other products. It is important not to wait too long to hire an attorney. The statute of limitations for a product defect lawsuit is a little murky in Nevada. An argument can be made that it is four years, but it is much safer to file a lawsuit within two years, which is the general statute of limitations for most personal injury claims. If you wait too long to file a lawsuit, the courts will likely dismiss your case.
Most product liability suits take the form of strict liability claims, where the manufacturer is responsible for your injuries, even without proof of negligence. The attorneys at Claggett & Sykes work to prove the following:
- You sustained injuries or suffered other losses, such as the death of a loved one or a serious injury. To have grounds for any type of personal injury claim, the plaintiff must have real, tangible damages, such as physical injuries, financial losses, or emotional suffering.
- The product was defective. The product must contain at least one of the three main types of defects: a manufacturing error, flawed design, or failure to warn. The plaintiff will have to prove the item is defective in some way. The defect must have made the item unreasonably dangerous for regular use. If you’re injured by a defective product, don’t throw it away or return it to the manufacturer – save it as well as its packaging.
- You were using the product as intended. In Nevada, the product manufacturer cannot argue that you were negligent in using the product as a defense to a strict product liability claim. The manufacturer may argue that you misused the product, but the misuse must have been unforeseeable to the manufacturer. If the misuse was of the type that the manufacturer could have expected , then the misuse is not a valid defense to a strict product liability claim.
- The defect caused your damages. There must be a causal link between the item’s defect and your accident or injuries. You must show that the defect was a substantial factor in causing your injuries. This typically requires medical documentation, so you should always make sure to see a medical professional and save all your receipts and paperwork.
A proficient attorney in Las Vegas can help simplify your product liability claim. At Claggett & Sykes Law Firm, we take care of the paperwork so you can focus on healing. We’ll make sure you file your claim within the required timeframe and according to Nevada’s rules. You won’t have to worry about making a mistake that bars you from recovery.
How can your Las Vegas product liability attorneys help?
Product defects can result in lifelong injuries or wrongful death, tearing a family apart. A defective seatbelt can permanently paralyze a car accident victim. A poorly designed water heater can explode, causing expensive property damage in a house fire. Even “minor” injuries from defective products can result in significant medical costs and lost wages. A product liability lawsuit may result in payment for all the damages a defective product caused you or a loved one.
Our Las Vegas product defect lawyers have significant experience handling various types of defective product cases. A conversation with one of our attorneys can help you understand the value of your claim and how best to go about pursuing recovery. You may need to negotiate a settlement with a major insurance company or go up against more than one defendant. We have years of experience handling complex products litigation and preparing our clients for the possibility of a trial. Contact us today to learn more about how we can help.
Call our Las Vegas product defect lawyers for a free case evaluation
Product defects can result in severe injuries or wrongful death, changing your life forever. The attorneys at Claggett & Sykes can help you understand how to best go about pursuing recovery for your accident claim. Whether it’s negotiating an acceptable settlement or going to trial to make things right, a lawyer can help. Call 702-333-7777 or fill out our contact form today to set up a consultation in our Las Vegas offices.