Representing Victims of Defective Products in Western New York

Although most people realize that they can hold individuals accountable for their negligent and reckless conduct, many are not aware that the same is true for businesses and corporations that manufacture consumer products. This is an important legal option, as consumer products can and do cause a significant number of injuries every year.

Product liability cases are notoriously complex, as they often involve the claims of multiple corporations. If you were injured by a consumer product and you have questions about filing a claim, it is important to contact a skilled Buffalo product liability lawyer. At Richmond Vona, LLC, our personal injury attorneys have the resources and experience to effectively represent you and your loved ones.

Product Liability Legal Theories

Product liability claims can be filed under one of the following three legal theories:

  • Negligence: Under this legal theory, the injured person (or plaintiff) argues that a liable entity (whether that’s the product designer, manufacturer, distributor, etc.) was somehow negligent in the creation, manufacture, sale, or marketing of the product.
  • Strict Liability: In cases involving strict liability, product designers, manufacturers, and distributors (as well as other entities involved in the chain of production) are liable for defective products regardless of whether or not they acted negligently.
  • Breach of Warranty: Under this theory, the plaintiff argues that the product did not work in the way in which it was intended or marketed and, therefore, the liable party breached either an express or implied warranty to the consumer.

These theories overlap in many ways, so it is not uncommon for a plaintiff’s complaint to include all three legal theories, especially when multiple entities are at fault for an injury. Although all of these legal theories have different elements of proof, they also involve a similar claim—namely that a product was defective, or not reasonably safe due to a design defect, flawed manufacturing process, or inadequate warning. A practiced Buffalo attorney who has experience in product liability law could help injured individual’s understand what legal theory their claim might fall under.

What Types of Defects Does Product Liability Cover?

In most product liability cases, the defect claimed by the plaintiff falls under one of the following three categories:

  • Design defect
  • Manufacturing defect
  • Failure to warn

Determining which of these defects caused an injury requires a thorough investigation into the product in question, the facts of the accident, as well as the types of injuries the plaintiff suffered.

How to Prove Product Liability in New York

To successfully file a product liability claim in New York, a plaintiff will need to prove that the manufacturer, seller, and/or distributor of the product failed to use reasonable care in one or more of the following ways:

  • The design of the product
  • The manufacturing of the product
  • Providing adequate warnings concerning dangers with the intended (and even some unintended) uses of the product

To prove there was a failure to warn or an inadequate warning, you must show that the company knew or should have known about the dangers or hazards that caused the injury. In New York, a company is held as an expert in its respective industry and has a duty to stay current with the medical and scientific literature within its field; this is how you show a company “should have known” about hazards or dangers associated with the product it sold.

Finally, you must prove that defect in the product was a substantial cause of your injuries. This typically involves proving the following:

  • The defect in question was a substantial factor in causing your injury, and;
  • You were using the product for its intended purpose or for a reasonably foreseeable reason.

The third legal theory upon which New York plaintiffs can base a product liability case is a breach of warranty.

These actions can be based on two types of warranties:

  • Express warranties, such as those included on a product label or in an advertisement
  • Implied warranties of merchantability, or the implied understanding that a product is fit to be used for a specific purpose

For help determining whether you have a product liability case under New York law, please contact our Buffalo product liability attorneys today.

CALL TODAY FOR HELP FROM A BUFFALO PRODUCT LIABILITY ATTORNEY

Please reach out to the dedicated Buffalo product liability lawyers at Richmond Vona, LLC to learn more about filing a claim in Western New York. Our firm is not afraid of taking on tough, complex cases and going up against major product manufacturers and their insurance providers. We have a proven track record of success, having secured hundreds of millions of dollars for our clients, and we are ready to put our powerful reputation, experience, and resources on your side.

Meet Our Attorneys

With over 25 years of combined personal injury experience, our co-founding attorneys, John E. Richmond and Keith R. Vona, have helped injury victims and their family members recover more than $150 million in financial relief.
John E. Richmond
John E. Richmond
Co-Founding Member
As one of New York’s top personal injury attorneys, John E. Richmond understands that clients come first. With over a decade of experience representing plaintiffs, he knows how to hold negligent corporations and big insurance companies liable.
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Keith R. Vona
Keith R. Vona
Co-Founding Member
In his nearly 15 years in practice, Keith has been consistently recognized for his client service and record of results. He has been selected for inclusion in the New York Super Lawyers® Rising Stars list four times (2013 to 2016), an honor reserved for the top up-and-coming attorneys.
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Keith R. Vona
John E. Richmond

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