Garden-Fresh Foods recently expanded its voluntary recall of certain ready-to-eat salads, dips and slaw that are sold through a variety of brands because they may contain a dangerous strand of Listeria monocytogenes that pose health risks to consumers. This organism has been linked to serious and possibly fatal infections for which children, the elderly and people with weakened immune systems are at most risk. The results can range from symptoms typical of a common cold in otherwise healthy people to miscarriages and stillbirths.
You hope not to come across contaminated food or defective products that you paid to use or consume, but even people who take the most stringent precautions sometimes can’t avoid harm. When this happens, those injured by a defective product, whether food, medication, toy or appliance, can file a products liability claim to receive compensation for their related losses. While the specifics may vary from state to state, following is a brief explanation of the most common types of products liability claims injured consumers can file.
Claims based on negligence
Sellers and manufacturers have a duty to provide customers with safe products. Negligence cases attempt to prove the following when this does not happen:
There was a defect in the product.
The defect directly resulted in your injury or harm.
You suffered actual losses from the injury.
The idea in a negligence claim is that the seller or manufacturer was aware or should have been aware of the defect. If this is proven, and the lack of care resulted in your harm, you have case.
Claims based on strict liability
Sellers and manufacturers have a duty not to put “unreasonably dangerous” products in the hands of consumers. Strict liability cases hold them responsible for their products and legally liable for injuries directly caused by them, regardless of whether they knew about the defect.
Claims based on breach of warranty
Sellers and manufacturers have a duty to follow through on promises that their products are safe. Breach of warranty cases hold them responsible when a written, verbally expressed or legally implied promise of safety is broken and directly results in injury.