March 17, 2016

When Consumer Goods Cause Bad Injuries: Consumer Electronics

Category: Products Liability | Author: | Share:

In February, we examined product liability cases involving children’s products and toys. This month, we’re focusing on consumer electronics.

As we discussed in February, there are three different types of product defects that can give rise to strict liability for manufacturers and sellers. These are: design defects, manufacturing defects and warning defects (also known as “failure to warn”). All three types of defects can apply to consumer electronics.

Defective Consumer Electronics

Each year, manufacturers recall countless electronic devices due to product defects. While some of these recalls make headlines, most of them fly under the radar. If you bought your device second-hand (and, in some cases, even if you bought it new), you may never find out that it is subject to a recall. Types of consumer electronics that frequently get recalled include:

  • Monitors
  • Music players
  • Notebooks, laptops and PCs
  • Phones (both mobile and landline)
  • Tablets
  • Televisions
  • Video game consoles
  • Other electronic devices such as scooters and hoverboards

Consumer Electronic Injuries: Fires and Electrocutions

Some of the most common consumer electronic-related injuries result from fires and electrocutions. While electronics should be professionally engineered subject to thorough quality testing, dangerous products still make their way onto the shelves with alarming frequency. Faulty electrical connections, issues with overheating, and other defects can cause fires and electrocutions that lead to serious, debilitating and disfiguring injuries.

Consumer Electronic Injuries: Product Malfunctions

Other malfunctions can lead to injuries as well. As consumers, we have the right to expect products to be safe for their intended use. If an electronic device malfunctions while being used as intended, in the absence of a reasonable warning, individuals who suffer injuries will often be entitled to financial compensation.

Who is Responsible for Injuries Caused by a Defective Electronic Device?

The Indiana Products Liability Act is designed to protect consumers, and in order to do so it imposes liability for product defects on all companies involved in the “chain of distribution.” This means that, if you or a family member has been injured by a defective electronic device, you will generally be able to seek compensation from:

  • Designers
  • Manufacturers
  • Wholesalers
  • Distributors
  • Retailers

Of course, you can only recover just compensation once. While the “chain of distribution” rule gives injury victims multiple sources of recovery, it does not entitle them to multiple recoveries. In most cases, one way or another, the companies involved in the chain will sort out which one (or ones) bear ultimate financial responsibility for your losses after you receive your award of just compensation.

Have You or a Loved One Been Injured by an Electronic Device? Contact Price Waicukauski Joven & Catlin, LLC Today

At Price Waicukauski Joven & Catlin, LLC, we represent victims of defective consumer electronics in Indianapolis and throughout Indiana. Our Indianapolis product liability attorneys have decades of experience helping victims secure just compensation for their losses.  If you or a loved one has been injured by an electronic device, we encourage you to contact us for a free, no-obligation consultation to learn more about your legal rights.