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Las Vegas Product Defect Attorney

It only takes one minor product defect to cause a major tragedy. Defective vehicle parts, medical equipment, and consumer products have led to thousands of injuries and deaths over the years. 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. Come to the product liability attorneys at Claggett & Sykes Law Firm for help with these cases in Las Vegas.

 

We Have Significant Product Liability Experience

Claggett & Sykes has significant experience handling defective product cases. In 2013, we secured a significant recovery for a victim of a defective product. Skyjack manufactured a certain type of scissor lift with a defect in the top guardrail. The rail separated from the lift when the plaintiff’s tool belt caught its underside while he was installing HVAC ductwork in a hotel. This defect caused our client to fall 22 feet, landing face-first on a concrete surface. Our client suffered severe injuries, with multiple broken bones and permanent traumatic brain damage. His damages were in the millions of dollars for past and future medical expenses.

Sean Claggett and his team filed claims against Skyjack and the equipment rental service, Ahern. 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 the client – we also forced Skyjack to change the designs of its lifts, preventing the same accidents from happening in the future.

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 car parts – into a dangerous one.  There are three major types of defects that may cause consumer injury:

  • Design Defects: When something in the design of the product is unsafe.
  • Manufacturing Defects: Defects that occur during the assembly or manufacturing of the product.
  • Marketing Defects: These defects include inadequate safety warnings, improper labeling, and insufficient instructions.

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 product liability lawsuits. Most households contain thousands of consumer products, from electric devices to pieces of furniture. Defects in any of these items can ultimately cause personal injuries. This is the main way that product liability lawsuits differ from other personal injury suits. 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 the accident.

Medical Devices and Equipment

Defects in medical equipment can be the difference between life and death. Patients count on medical devices such as pacemakers, stents, implants, and defibrillators to protect their lives and ensure their well-being. Any type of defect can make these items unsafe for use – worsening the patient’s prognosis and even resulting in wrongful death. There are a number of ongoing lawsuits against manufacturers and distributors for defective medical equipment. Current cases involve items such as:

  • Metal hip replacements
  • DePuy hip implants
  • IVC blood clot filters
  • Drug-coated stents
  • Guidant defibrillators
  • Transvaginal mesh
  • Da Vinci surgical robots
  • LASIK eye surgery
  • Mirena implant
  • NuvaRing
  • Power morcellators

Medical devices manufacturers must abide by high standards of care to prevent mistakes and defects. Breaching these standards can be disastrous. Patients can suffer serious injuries, pain and suffering, and excessive medical bills due to defective and faulty medical equipment. If any of these products or another piece of medical equipment caused your injuries or a loved one’s death because of a defect, contact an attorney right away. You may be eligible to join a class action or mass tort against the manufacturing company or another party.

Pharmaceuticals and Drugs

Bad drugs are prominent areas of product liability law, with a long list of drugs that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has recalled or warned consumers against. Pharmaceutical lawsuits often hinge on one particular type of defect – improper marketing. Many suits allege that the drug’s manufacturer failed to warn of risks and side effects that the company knew or reasonably should have known about. This led to patients taking the drugs and having severe and even fatal side effects without warning. Drugs with current lawsuits against the manufacturers include:

  • Xarelto
  • Paxil
  • Yaz/Yasmin
  • Meridia
  • Hydroxycut
  • Prozac
  • Accutane
  • Pradaxa

There are hundreds of “bad drugs” with complaints against them, from antipsychotics to blood thinners. It is a drug manufacturer’s duty to abide by FDA standards while creating and distributing drugs. It must ensure its medications do not cause unreasonable risk of harm. Drugs must be free from manufacturing errors, design defects, and improper marketing. Otherwise, the manufacturer, distributor, or wholesaler may be responsible for damages that result from defective drugs. Keep in mind that FDA approval does not mean the drug is safe. Contact an attorney regarding any type of medication you believe has a defect that caused your injuries.

Household Appliances

Many serious injuries occur right in the home. Appliances you trust around your household could flood your home, cause a fire, electrocute you, explode, give you chemical burns, or otherwise cause you harm. Appliance manufacturers must properly test their items before making them available to the public. Failure to conduct enough research on the item can lead to thousands of households installing dangerous and defective appliances. Defective fans, water heaters, HVAC systems, ovens, dishwashers, toasters, and other common appliances can end up in a hospital visit.

Fires are one of the most common problems with defective household appliances. Cooking and heating equipment, electronic devices, clothes dryers, home grills, and washing machines have all started structure fires in the past. The majority (50.8%) of house fires occur due to cooking, according to the U.S. Fire Administration. Another 10.8% are from heating, and 6.4% are from electrical malfunctions. Don’t assume a house fire or another type of harm that occurs at home is purely your fault. The product you were using may have a dangerous defect. Speak to an attorney to find out more.

Children’s Toys

Parents assume toys sold in stores are safe for the children that match the appropriate age range. Not all manufacturers take adequate care when designing, manufacturing, or marketing children’s toys. Some of the worst types of product liability cases are those involving injured children. Defects can range from an electrical toy that catches fire to a toy with a pull string that poses a strangulation hazard. The most common child injuries from defective toys are:

  • Strangulation
  • Suffocation
  • Punctures
  • Amputations
  • Fractures
  • Burns
  • Electrocutions
  • Bruising
  • Abrasions and lacerations
  • Dangerous lead levels

There were 25 total children’s toys recalled in 2016, according to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission.  Parents can keep up with the Consumer Product Safety Commission’s recall lists, which continuously update to include the latest children’s toy recalls. To pursue a lawsuit against a toy manufacturing company or distributor, the toy in question does not have to be on a recall list. If it has a defect that caused your child’s injury, you may have grounds for a claim.

Nevada Product Liability Laws

In Las Vegas, injury victims must follow specific rules to pursue compensation for a defective product. Nevada’s product liability laws mandate why and when consumers can file lawsuits against manufacturers and other products. For instance, a plaintiff has four years from the date of the incident to file a product liability claim in Nevada. The plaintiff must prove four main elements for a successful lawsuit:

  1. You sustained injuries or suffered other losses, such as property damage or the death of a loved one. To have grounds for any type of personal injury claim, the plaintiff must have “real, compensable damages,” such as physical injuries, financial losses, property damage, or emotional suffering. Without real damages, there is nothing for the courts to compensate.
  2. The product is 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.
  3. The defect caused your damages. There must be a causal link between the item’s defect and your accident or injuries. Even if you have proof that an item has a defect, you will not have a case unless you can prove it was the item that caused your alleged damages. This may require medical documentation.
  4. You were using the project as intended. The defendant may argue that you caused your own injuries by using the item in a way the manufacturer did not intend or through another act of negligence. In Nevada, the plaintiff is still eligible for compensation as long as he or she is less than 50% responsible for the incident.

A capable 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.

Call (702) 333-7777 for a Free Case Evaluation

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.

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. A lawyer can help. Get more information during a free, no-obligation case evaluation at Claggett & Sykes Law Firm. We’re experienced & dependable personal injury attorneys located in Las Vegas, Nevada.