As a consumer, you have the right to expect that the products you buy will not harm you or make you ill if you use them correctly.
Unfortunately, people of all ages are hurt or killed every year by products that they assumed were safe, but were, in fact, defectively made or poorly designed.
It is not always easy to determine what made a product defective, and manufacturers are not always willing to accept blame for the injuries their products cause. A defective product attorney can help you seek compensation for your losses due to a dangerous product.
Did you suffer serious injuries or was your loved one killed by a dangerous or defective product in South Carolina? Jebaily Law Firm represents victims of defective products in Myrtle Beach, Florence, and many surrounding areas of South Carolina. Call us or contact us online to take advantage of a free consultation.
Defective Product Liability Lawyers in South Carolina
In most cases, the manufacturer of a product will be the primary defendant in any legal action over a defective product. The manufacturer was typically the party that was responsible for a product’s entire development up until the point of sale.
A seller could also be liable in some circumstances. When a product is defective because of a defective part, then the manufacturer of that part could be liable as well.
Liability can be extremely complex in some product cases, and there may be cases in which multiple parties are liable for a victim’s injuries. In such cases, the defendants may attempt to shift the blame to one another in an effort to reduce their responsibility.
Types of Defective Products in South Carolina
A defective product claim will usually be based on one of the three following issues:
- Defective Design — The fundamental design of a product made it unsafe for all users. Such cases often result in class action lawsuits or multidistrict litigation (MDL).
- Manufacturing Defect — An error in the actual manufacturing process created a defect isolated to a single product or batch of products. In such cases, fewer people may be at risk of injury than is the case with design defects.
- Failure to Warn — A manufacturer has an obligation to warn a consumer about any potential dangers associated with the product. People who were not warned against specific uses and were hurt by the product could be able to file these types of claims.
A product liability claim may be based on negligence, strict liability in tort, or breach of warranty.
Most Common Types of Defective Products in South Carolina
Some of the types of items most frequently involved in product liability actions include, but are not limited to:
- Children’s toys
- Motor vehicle parts
- Pharmaceutical drugs
- Medical devices
- Construction tools or equipment
- Car seats
Virtually any consumer product could be potentially defective. No particular category is free from potential defects.
South Carolina Defective Products in the Workplace
A defective product that causes a workplace injury adds another level to that person’s compensation for their injuries. While workers’ compensation prohibits lawsuits against employers, a person injured by a defective product may be able to file a lawsuit against the party responsible for the product’s defect.
In other words, a person injured on the job by a defective product could be entitled to workers’ compensation from their employer and additional compensation from the negligent maker of the product. It is important to have these kinds of product issues investigated quickly and thoroughly.
Types of Compensation Available for a South Carolina Defective Product Injury
Many defective product cases are resolved through settlements. If a responsible party refuses to provide a satisfactory settlement, the victim could file a lawsuit and possibly be awarded compensatory damages.
Compensatory damages usually include economic damages and non-economic damages. Economic damages refer to tangible losses such as medical expenses, lost wages, and property damage. Noneconomic damages are much more subjective, including awards such as emotional distress, loss of consortium, or pain and suffering.
In a limited number of cases, a victim could also be awarded punitive damages (occasionally referred to as exemplary damages). Punitive damages may be awarded only when a person is injured or killed by a defendant’s willful, reckless, or wanton conduct, and South Carolina Code § 15-32-510 establishes that any claim for punitive damages needs to be included in a complaint.
Under South Carolina Code § 15-32-520, all actions tried before a jury involving punitive damages must be conducted before the same jury. A jury can consider all relevant evidence in determining the amount of punitive damages, including the defendant’s degree of culpability, their ability to pay, and many other factors.
South Carolina Code § 15-32-530(A) establishes that punitive damages awards cannot exceed the greater of three times the amount of compensatory damages or $500,000. When a jury returns a verdict for punitive damages that is more than the statutory limitation, the trial court will first determine whether certain factors could allow for the limitation to be increased to four times the amount of compensatory damages or $2 million.
Contact South Carolina Product Liability Lawyers at Jebaily Law Firm Today!
If you sustained severe injuries or if a dangerous or defective product killed your loved one in South Carolina, you may be wondering how you’ll possibly be able to pay your medical bills and other expenses, especially if you were forced to miss time from work. Fortunately, an experienced attorney could help you hold the manufacturer accountable for their negligence and pursue the compensation you need to move on with your life.
Jebaily Law Firm has been helping people injured by defective products for Over 50 Years. You can have a knowledgeable member of our team answer all of your legal questions when you call us or contact us online to schedule a free consultation.