Product Liability Attorneys
As a consumer, you trust that the products you purchase are safe when used as designed. Unfortunately, there are times when they fall short of our expectations – your car’s airbags may fail to operate, toxic hair products may cause head injuries, and even a baby playpen may prove to be unsafe. Broken bones, eye injuries, amputations, and paralysis are only some of the injuries defective products can cause, not to mention wrongful death.
We at Eisenberg Law Offices, based in Madison, Wisconsin, understand the distress such injuries bring to you and your family. Our personal injury attorneys will collect the required product information, hire experts for analyzing the proof and medical records, and ensure that you receive the compensation you deserve.
Products liability is the responsibility of designers, manufacturers and suppliers of goods to deliver products free of defects and to compensate for injuries caused by any defective merchandise that is approved for sale. Products liability law ensures that the victims of defective products receive compensation from the parties who place such products on the market.
Tort Reform in Wisconsin
On January 27, 2011, Wisconsin governor Scott Walker signed the Omnibus Tort Reform Act, which brought significant changes to a vendor’s exposure to personal injury liability. The changes in laws are designed to facilitate the limiting of liability. The new laws:
(1) specify the product defect definition, especially the design defect;
(2) require, if possible, the plaintiffs to proceed against the manufacturer instead of the seller;
(3) require the jury to presume that intoxication caused an accident, if the plaintiff was under the influence of drugs or alcohol, when it happened;
(4) presume the product is not defective, if it complies with governmental standards;
(5) call for dismissing a plaintiff’s case, when injury is caused by an inherent characteristic of a product, which would be easily recognized by any person using it;
(6) restrict the use of remedial measures taken after an accident as evidence for proving the defect in the product;
(7) free the manufacturer from the liability if the product was manufactured more than 15 years before;
(8) direct the jury to allocate a percentage of fault to each entity responsible for an injury;
(9) raise the standards for expert testimony;
(10) limit punitive damages to $ 200,000.00 or double the amount of compensatory damages, whichever is higher;
(11) toughen the rules relating to damages for frivolous claims;
(12) limit the application of the risk contribution theory;
(13) limit non-economic damages for nursing homes;
(14) tighten the confidentiality of health care services reviews.
Although the new laws are clearly pro-business in nature, Eisenberg Law Offices product liability attorneys know that the injuries caused by defective products cannot be undone and must be exposed. You can rely on our thorough knowledge of Wisconsin laws and extensive experience of product liability cases – we will do all it takes to pursue your rights in court.
Theories of Liability
Products liability action can be based on one or more of four different theories: negligence, breach of warranty, misrepresentation, and strict liability.
The negligence theory examines the reasonableness of the defendant’s conduct. If the harm was caused by the lack of reasonable care in production, design or assembly of a product, the manufacturer can be held liable for negligence.
The breach of warranty theory is based upon contract law. If a seller fails to fulfill the terms of a promise, claim or representation regarding the quality or type of the product, this seller can be held liable for breach of warranty.
The misrepresentation theory refers to giving consumers false security about a particular product through advertising and sales promotion. In this case, the plaintiff has to prove that he or she relied on the representations made.
The strict product liability theory dictates that a seller is responsible for all defective products which unreasonably threaten a consumer’s safety. The plaintiff has to prove that the product was defective, the defect caused his or her damages, and that the product was unreasonably dangerous.
It takes professional knowledge to choose and apply the appropriate liability theory – defective product cases tend to be complex and expensive. Our Madison defective product attorneys advise you to enlist professional legal help to recover your damages.
We can assure you that the manufacturers will aggressively defend their case in court, as their profits would be at stake – you have to be prepared to withstand them. If you have been injured due to a defective product and need an experienced personal injury attorney who understands the new tort reform rules, contact Eisenberg Law Offices for a free consultation. You can trust our experienced product liability attorneys to represent you in a product liability lawsuit.