When a product is purchased, the customer places trust in the product that it will function properly. However, if a product malfunctions and causes an injury or damage, there is an opportunity for financial compensation depending on the situation. There are two main types of liability associated with these claims: strict and product; however, the distinction between the two is often confused. So, when it comes to strict liability vs product liability, what’s the difference? 

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What is Strict Liability? 

Strict liability holds the manufacturer or retailer accountable for the injuries you suffered due to their product if the product is inherently dangerous. In this situation, you do not need to prove that the company was negligent, but you need to prove that you used the product as intended by the manufacturer. It can also apply to injuries due to inherently dangerous activities. The extent of the financial compensation will depend on the physical and emotional injury as well as money lost due to the injury. 

Examples of strict liability include 

  • Chemicals – Chemical transportation or disposal could potentially injure someone even though precautionary measures were taken. The company would still be held liable. 
  • Fire and Electrical Hazards – Manufacturers that use fire and electricity could harm a bystander, and the company would be held liable for the injury 
  • Explosives – Miners or construction workers might use explosives on the job. Although the required precautions were taken, a bystander gets injured by the blast. The company can be held liable for this injury. 
  • Sharp Edges – Cutting tools could lead to dangers that harm nearby people. Since this is inherently dangerous, the company would be held liable even when precautions are taken. 
  • Domesticated/Wild Animals – If a property owner owns an animal that is commonly violent and poses a significant threat to other people, and that animal attacks another person on the property, the owner might be liable. 

What is Product Liability? 

Product liability holds the manufacturer, distributor, or retailer accountable for their negligence that resulted in your injury. This negligence could include a defect that makes the product dangerous or a defect that prevents a safety component of a product from functioning properly, leading to an injury. In addition, inadequate instructions and warnings for the use of the product is considered negligent by the company. The amount of financial compensation you receive depends on the physical and emotional injury and financial loss due to the injury. 

Examples of product liability include 

  • Design Defects 
  • Manufacturing Defects 
  • Failure to Warn

Foley and Small Can Help You 

Contact a lawyer if you were injured due to a purchased product to get financial compensation. Your lawyer can help identify whether your case concerns strict liability vs product liability. If you or someone you love has been affected by either strict liability or product liability we can help. With our expertise at Foley and Small, we can help you every step of the way. 

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