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Does product liability exist for naturally unsafe products?

| Jun 22, 2021 | Products Liability |

In most cases, if you suffer an injury due to an unsafe product, you would have the ability to make a liability claim against the manufacturer or other responsible party for selling you an unsafe product. However, there are exceptions to this rule.

Products that are naturally unsafe have an exception when it comes to liability for injuries they cause.

The requirements

To be a naturally unsafe product, it must be dangerous when used as intended. There must also be no way to make the product safer and still keep its function.

Example products

A good example of a naturally dangerous product is a knife. When used as intended, it can be deadly or at least cause injury. There is no way to make this product work like it should and keep it completely safe.

Liability

There is some liability that still remains even with these types of products. The manufacturer must provide you with sufficient warning labels and information so that you understand how to safely use the product and avoid needless injury. If the manufacturer fails to do this, then there is a liability.

If you were to use a product as instructed by the manufacturer and suffer an injury due to some design flaw or inadequate instructions, then the manufacturer could still face a claim. Do keep in mind this would not apply if the injury occurs accidentally. For example, when using a knife, if it slips and cuts your finger, that is an accident and not an incident for which the manufacturer is liable.

The best advice for naturally unsafe products is to use them exactly as directed by the manufacturer to avoid injury. Yet, when products cause harm anyway, you must hold negligent manufacturers accountable.