Design Defects

News & Analysis as of

The Failure to Warn of Cannabinoid Hyperemesis Syndrome

As more states legalize marijuana for recreational use, the long-term effects of marijuana use —the good and the bad — will continue to have a significant effect on the law, and in particular, products liability law. Products...more

Lessons from November and December of 2016 That Will Help You Get Off to a Great Start in 2017

From the time that I was in elementary school through my years in law school, my grandfather always stressed the importance of getting off to a good start each new academic year. The importance of a good start is just as...more

Product Liability Update: January 2017

Massachusetts Appeals Court Holds Birth Control Patch Manufacturer Had Duty to Warn Patient Directly But Packet Insert Adequately Warned of Greater Risk of Blood Clots As Compared to Birth Control Pill; Design Defect Claim...more

Hip Case Breaks the Right Way in New York

A recent case in the Southern District of New York debunks two myths that we see all the time. Myth number one: A medical device is defective if it fails. Myth number two: A plaintiff can prove causation on a...more

Emerging Trends Newsletter - Q4

The Volcker Rule Under the Trump Administration - The so-called Volcker Rule—named after Paul Volcker, a former chairman of the Federal Reserve Board—was part of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection...more

Lessons Learned and Compliance Trends from the VW and Takata Scandals (Part III of III)

When unraveling a major corporate scandal, especially multi-year schemes involving senior executives, the blame game or lessons learned approach can easily turn into a fruitless exercise. The VA and Takata scandals are...more

Takata – Criminal Airbag Scheme and Innocent Consumer Harm (Part II of III)

In my continuing review of corporate misconduct in the automobile industry, today we examine the Takata Corporation scandal for its airbag scheme. Takata is a manufacturer and supplier of automotive safety equipment. It...more

Sweeping Connecticut Supreme Court Decision Refines Existing Tort Law

In arguably the most important Connecticut tort-law decision in decades, the Connecticut Supreme Court in Bifolck v. Philip Morris, Inc., --- A.3d ---, 2016 WL 7509118 (Conn. Dec. 29, 2016), declined to adopt the approach of...more

IADC Campaigns for Industry Custom Evidence in California's Design Defect Risk-Benefit Analysis

Recently, the International Association of Defense Counsel (“IADC”) filed an amicus brief in support of Toyota in William Jae Kim v. Toyota Motor Corporation (No. S232754). Kim v. Toyota is currently on appeal before the...more

Looming Takata Bankruptcy Presents Risk and Uncertainty to Trade Creditors

In the latest sign of the Takata Corporation airbag fall-out, on December 26, 2016 BMW announced that it will recall nearly 200,000 of its cars in China with Takata airbags. Takata and its 19 OEM customers face potential...more

A Gem on Alternative Design from a Pelvic Mesh MDL

We don’t write a lot on the various pelvic mesh MDLs in West Virginia because we are so heavily involved in two of them. But the MDL court entered an order last week on design defect and alternative design that we consider to...more

Can a Football Helmet Manufacturer Be Responsible for High School Football Player’s Tragic Death?

A Chicago mother who tragically lost her son following a football-related injury recently filed suit against the city school board and the helmet manufacturer, alleging both parties failed to take reasonable steps to ensure...more

Industry custom evidence held admissible in CA product liability case based on defective design

A recent California appellate decision, Kim v. Toyota Motor Corp, if upheld by the California Supreme Court, could change the landscape in the admissibility of industry custom and practice evidence in strict products...more

What are experts saying about Stryker Accolade V40?

Stryker Accolade V40 LFIT Hip Implant Dissociation - Over the past few years, various orthopedic surgeons around the country and their patients have faced a catastrophic failure of Stryker’s Accolade and V40 LFIT hip...more

Are Stryker V40 Femoral Heads (CoCr) Defective?

Stryker V40 Femoral Heads (CoCr) Associated With Spontaneous and Catastrophic Head-Neck Dissociation - Stryker may face yet another crisis associated with their total hip replacement medical devices – and this time it...more

Australia Concerned About Stryker Made LFIT Femoral Heads

On September 27, 2016, the Department of Health Therapeutic Goods Administration (the Australian equivalent of the Food & Drug Administration) issued a hazard alert relating to LFIT Anatomic CoCr V40 femoral heads...more

Alabama Supreme Court Imposes Tough Standard on Safer Alternative Design

As the calendar turns from August to September, it is time once again to concede the strength of the Southeastern Conference. You probably think we are referring to college football or basketball, in which teams from...more

Major Win for Products Manufacturers on Safer, Alternative Design Requirement

In a unanimous decision released last week, the Alabama Supreme Court delivered a significant victory for manufacturers defending products liability claims in Hosford v. BRK Brands, Inc. As in most jurisdictions, a plaintiff...more

California Federal Court Dismisses Inferior Complaint

Inferior vena cava filters resemble what we used to call “daddy long legs.” You know what we mean: the spider-like creatures with small centers, from which long, bent legs emanate in all directions. That is sort of what IVC...more

Something Went Right In Brazil

Zika virus, Olympic unpreparedness, economic collapse, presidential impeachment - a lot of things have gone wrong in Brazil lately. But we’re not here to talk about any of that. Here’s something that went right: Brazil v....more

Betterment on Construction Projects, part 2 (more cowbell) (law note)

Another question about betterment, and about A/E insurance policies: I am confused on why the A/E even carries error and omission insurance. I must re-read one of the policies. And if betterment protects the designer,...more

Middle District of Louisiana Gets it Wrong: A Different Product is not an “Alternative Design”

Over the Fourth of July weekend, we in the Philadelphia area learned that 120 of the “new, state-of-the-art” trains in our regional commuter rail system were being pulled out of service. Someone noticed that the trains were...more

Expert’s Failure to Test Theory No “Silver Bullet” for Defense

The United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit recently held that an expert offering opinions on a proposed safer alternative design in a product liability matter does not need to perform any testing of the...more

The Difference Between Manufacturing and Design Defects

Some plaintiffs seem to think that if they allege any problems about anything in the manufacturing process of a prescription medical product, then it falls under the rubric of “manufacturing defect.” They’re wrong, of course....more

Fifth Circuit Considers Allocation of Risk of Defective Plans and Specifications in Reversing $1.29 Million Judgment Entered in...

Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport Board v. INET Airport Systems, Inc., et al., 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 6646, 819 F.3d 245 (5th Cir. Apr. 12, 2016) - This action arose out of a construction project in terminal E of...more

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