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Il injury lawyerConsumers use products to cook, clean, maintain their yard, travel, and complete countless other everyday tasks. Most people assume that any product available for purchase has been tested and proven to be safe. While this is generally true, unsafe products do sometimes reach consumers’ hands. When a consumer is harmed by a dangerous or defective product, he or she may be able to take legal action against the at-fault party. The injured consumer may be entitled to financial restitution. However, knowing whether an injury was caused by a defective product is not always easy.

Product Defects Can Cause Severe Injury or Even Death

Almost everyone who has used a hammer has accidentally struck their thumb or fingers at least once. Injuries from consumer products are not rare. However, some product injuries result in much more than a sore thumb. Sadly, people have even lost their lives due to dangerous or defective products.

Product defects can occur because the initial design of the product was defective or inherently dangerous or defects can occur due to mistakes during the manufacturing process. A product may also be considered defective if the product does not contain appropriate warning labels or instructions for safe use.

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IL injury lawyerMost adults take one or more medications each day. Rigorous safety regulations and testing procedures are intended to ensure that prescription and over-the-counter medications are safe. Unfortunately, these measures do not always prevent dangerous medications from reaching pharmacies. Just recently, two popular blood pressure medications were recalled after testing showed that the medications may contain cancer-causing ingredients. Dangerous or defective products like these are not uncommon. Fortunately, there may be legal remedies available to those who were harmed by a defective product.

Medication Recalled by FDA

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration recently recalled two blood pressure medications produced by Lupin Pharmaceuticals Inc. The recall was issued due to concerns that the medications contain a “probable human carcinogen” or a substance thought to cause cancer in humans. Irbesartan tablets and Hydrochlorothiazide tablets were recalled after laboratory testing found unsafe levels of N-nitrosoirbesartan. Patients who currently take the recalled medications are encouraged to speak to their doctors about alternatives.

Legal Options for Those Harmed by Dangerous Medications or Defective Products

We expect our medications to be safe and effective. However, this is not always the case. Defective design, manufacturing mistakes, and other issues can cause medications to be unsafe for consumption. If you or a loved one were harmed by dangerous or defective medication, you may have certain legal options. You may be entitled to compensation for the harm the medication caused you or your loved one. Reimbursement for economic damages like additional medical expenses, lost income, funeral and burial expenses may be available. You may also be entitled to compensation for non-economic damages including your physical pain and emotional or mental suffering.

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IL injury lawyerIn Illinois and throughout the United States, the vast majority of car accidents are caused by the actions of at least one of the drivers involved. However, there are sometimes other contributing factors. In recent years, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has reported that in approximately 4 percent of accident cases, the critical reason for the crash can be attributed to either the vehicle itself or the surrounding environment. In some of these cases, a defective part or product may be fully or partially responsible for the collision and resulting injuries. If you have been injured in a single-vehicle or multi-vehicle accident, an experienced attorney can help you determine whether you may have a claim for compensation based on product liability.

Defective Car Parts

Cars and other motor vehicles include a number of features to both ensure that they can be safely operated, and to protect drivers who are involved in collisions. If any of these features fails or malfunctions in the time leading up to an accident or after the impact, serious injuries can result. Some examples of defective auto parts that may contribute to accidents include:

  • Seat belts - Seat belt restraints are meant to reduce the injuries that a driver or passenger may suffer in a car accident, but a design or manufacturing defect could mean that they are unable to withstand the force of a collision and fulfill their intended purpose.
  • Airbags - Like seat belts, airbags play an important role in protecting vehicle occupants in the event of a collision. Defective airbags could fail to deploy upon impact.
  • Tires - Defective tires may rupture without warning and cause a driver to lose control, resulting in a single-vehicle or multi-car accident.
  • Brakes - Brake failure due to defects can prevent a driver from safely reacting in time to slow and avoid a collision.
  • Accelerators - Defective acceleration pedals can sometimes stick, and in some recent cases, vehicles have been known to accelerate against the driver’s intentions.
  • Cruise control - Newer vehicles commonly have automated features, like adaptive cruise control and lane maintenance, that help drivers maintain control of their vehicles in traffic. However, if these systems fail, the driver may not have time to react to avoid an accident.

Does Product Liability Apply in My Case?

In Illinois, vehicle designers, manufacturers, and retailers can be liable for injuries caused by defects in their products. Sometimes a defective part may be the primary reason for an accident, in which case one of these parties may be mostly or fully responsible for compensating injury victims. Even in cases involving driver negligence, product manufacturers and designers can be partially liable if the failure of safety features led to more serious injuries than would have otherwise occurred. However, a designer, manufacturer, or retailer may be protected from product liability if the malfunction was due to improper maintenance or unsafe alterations, or if they had issued a recall addressing the failed parts and properly notified the vehicle’s owner.

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IL injury lawyerMost people do not think much about the grey, metallic guardrails lining the roads until they collide with one. Guardrails are a crucial safety component that has lessened the damage caused by countless car crashes. However, when a guardrail or other road barrier is defective in its design or manufacture, the barrier can do more harm than good in an accident. In cases such as these, a product liability claim may be brought against the party responsible for the defective road barrier.

Guardrails That Do Not Work as Intended

The purpose of a guardrail is to reduce the damage caused by an accident. Guardrails are often placed alongside steep slopes or on bridge ends to prevent cars from sliding down the incline. Median barriers are designed to prevent vehicles from crossing into oncoming traffic. A well-designed guardrail also helps absorb the impact of a collision and the end terminals curl inward when struck. However, some guardrails do not function as intended. Instead of reducing the harm caused by the impact, the barriers instead worsen the collision.

Bringing a Product Liability Claim After a Defective Roadside Barrier Crash

Guardrails and other barriers should be designed and manufactured so that they act as intended. However, budget cuts, carelessness, manufacturing mistakes, and other issues can cause defective barriers to be installed on roads and bridges. If a defective roadside barrier worsens a car crash victim’s injuries, the party who manufactured, designed, or installed the barrier may be liable for damages.

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IL injury lawyerEveryone makes decisions that they later regret. For one woman, the choice to substitute Gorilla Glue Spray Adhesive for her usual hairspray is one decision that may stick with her for the rest of her life. In a video originally featured on the popular social media platform TikTok, the woman explained that the glue left her hair tightly affixed to her scalp for over a month. The viral video has created a good deal of controversy across the internet. Some say that the woman has no one to blame but herself for the sticky situation while others point to misleading labels and insufficient product warnings as the cause of the problem. Regardless of fault, the issue brings up important questions about product liability.

Product Manufacturers and Designers Owe a Legal Duty to Consumers

Product liability law deals with the legal obligations that product manufacturers, designers, and retailers have to consumers. Parties must ensure that their products do not contain defects that may put consumers at an unreasonable risk of injury. Product liability claims are typically brought under the legal theories of strict liability, negligence, or breach of warranty. An individual may have a valid product liability claim if a defective product caused him or her injury and the injury led to damages.

Product liability claims may be based on:

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