Product Liability Cases Ultimately Benefit Everyone

by | Aug 13, 2015 | Lawyers

Most people are somewhat familiar with product liability cases. They may have heard about the lady who spilled hot coffee in her lap at McDonald’s and sued. People are also familiar with recalls when a car is found to have a defective part. Every time a smoker looks at their cigarette pack, they see the warnings that resulted from a product liability case.

What can be overlooked is that those cases came about because people died or were seriously injured. Ultimately, society as a whole benefits when a dangerous condition is corrected.

McDonald’s Extra Hot Coffee
The elderly lady who spilled McDonald’s coffee required several surgical skin grafts for her extremely painful third-degree burns. The infamous coffee was 30 degrees hotter than coffee served by others. McDonald’s had already paid out over half a million dollars on 700 previous burn claims. McDonald’s refused to pay her medical bills, but the jury held them liable.

The benefit to society: McDonald’s coffee is no longer served at that dangerously high temperature.

Motor Vehicle Product Liability Cases
There have been product liability cases and recalls involving vehicles of all types. They concerned problems such as SUVs and ATVs that rolled over too easily, tires that blew out too often and the recent rash of airbag problems. Long before the recalls, there were people being killed and injured by these problems. Eventually, legal action precipitated change.

The benefit to society: Dangerous problems were fixed.

The Philip Morris Smoking Case
As far back as the 1920s, cigarette ads showed healthy people happily smoking and men in doctor’s coats claiming that smoking was healthy. In 2002, Philip Morris was sued by a woman who claimed that her tobacco addiction and subsequent lung cancer was caused because the company did not warn her of the dangers of smoking. Evidence showed that the company had long been aware of the addictive power of tobacco and the link to lung cancer and other health issues. They lost the case.

The benefit to society: The number of smokers in the U.S. continues to decline. There are many reasons for this, but the publicity generated by the Product Liability lawsuit made smoking less attractive.
The Nettles Law Firm serves the legal needs of those in Las Vegas and Henderson, Nevada.

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