When you purchase a commodity or product, you expect it serves its purpose. Whether it is food, or appliances used to conduct various activities, you could not possibly imagine the possibility of it harming you. Nonetheless, this happens more often than you think.
In some instances, a commodity you’ve sourced from a local retail store may contain inherent defects that could lead to serious injury on consumption or use. Consequently, you may accrue substantial medical bills and get permanent injuries that could change your life forever. Luckily, they are product liability laws set up to safeguard your consumer rights and cushion you with compensation in case of a personal injury.
However, despite the legal remedies, you may not know what to do or where to start after surviving a product-related injury. If you find yourself in such a situation, here are a few steps you should take and tips that could increase the chances of your lawsuit succeeding.
Seek Medical Attention
The first step you should take after sustaining any injury, including product-related ones, is to seek immediate medical attention. Perhaps you’ve survived an accident using an inherently defective and dangerous product or consumed a food product that could trigger a severe medical condition. No matter the case, rush to the hospital immediately.
Product-related injuries could be fatal or cause damage that could cripple you indefinitely. Therefore, you should always prioritize your health before initiating a personal injury claim. The compensation you get from the lawsuit may not be helpful if you are completely incapacitated.
Ensure you follow your doctor’s instructions to the latter since failure may dent your product liability claim and reduce the chances of receiving adequate compensation for your injuries from dangerous products.
Keep Medical Records
After seeking medical attention and your subsequent release from the hospital, do not get rid of the medical records; they help prove product liability. The relevant records include your medical bills and test records. The test records are used to prove you sustained injury from a defective product, thus placing product liability on the manufacturing company.
On the other hand, medical bills are not only evidence of damage but also help determine the amount of compensation you get. The greater the medical bills evidenced from your medical records, the higher your chances of securing a hefty compensation.
Secure the Defective Product
Successful product liability cases require plaintiffs to prove that the product they file a complaint against is inherently dangerous due to a flaw in its design, manufacture, or warranty that caused their injury. Therefore, having the purported faulty item in your possession is essential.
Preserving the defective commodity enables you to bring it forth as evidence in a lawsuit. This will allow the court to examine it and determine the extent of its dangerous fault and relation to your injury. Ensure you do not tamper with the product to increase your chances of winning. If you cannot maintain the defective product, take as many pictures of it as possible to use as evidence.
Safeguard Documents Pertaining the Product
It is equally important to maintain custody of all the documents and everything related to the defective product. If the respondent disputes the validity of your product purchase, documents such as the commodity’s receipt or invoice and your credit card history could act as evidence of purchase. Thus, the manufacturer cannot purport you did not buy the item from them.
Similarly, the item’s packaging could come in handy since it is where most warranties are written down. However, the warranty terms may be presented in a different document. If the terms expressly state the product should meet specific safety standards and they don’t, which results in your injury, you are eligible for product liability compensation. Just ensure you have the warranty during the lawsuit.
Sometimes people may be at the scene of a malfunctioning or defective product that causes you injury. Perhaps you are riding your brand new bike on a busy street and the wheels suddenly loosen and fall off, resulting in a severe injury. In such circumstances, take the contact information of the onlookers so you can reach them if need be.
The present parties can give their account and can contribute to your personal injury lawsuit by providing their accounts as witnesses. Their perspective could go a long way in pining product liability on the alleged culprits and earn you the right to equitable compensation.
Keep Off Social Media
In the internet age, it is almost impossible to go a day without going through your social media pages and uploading status updates. However, although keeping in touch with friends on your favorite platform is essential, sharing details of your product-related personal injury with people online is arguably the worst thing you could do.
Your social media page is accessible to everyone, including parties to your product liability lawsuit. Therefore, they could use the information you relay on your social and photos you post on your feed against you during the trial. To avoid jeopardizing your chances of receiving compensation for your product-related injury, stay away from social media for a while.
Get an Attorney
Getting a qualified attorney is perhaps the best move you can make after surviving a product-related injury. With the aforementioned steps in mind, if you ever fall victim to a faulty product that causes harm to you or your loved one, don’t hesitate to contact Mottaz & Sisk Injury Law today. Our firm has experienced and skilled attorneys who understand the ethical and legal obligations to safeguard your best interest.