Over the decades, the laws and regulations protecting consumers have become stricter and more controlled. That’s why when we buy a product, whether a car, foodstuff, toys or safety clothing, we expect that the manufacturers have done their due diligence and that it is safe to use.
Unfortunately, this is not always the case. In 2021, according to NSC Injury Facts, 11.7 million people in the UK were treated in hospitals for injuries related to faulty consumer products, with most injuries happening to older adults and children. The impact of an injury can be life-changing and significantly impact a person’s physical and mental health, which is why you must seek legal advice if you or a loved one has been a victim.
What classifies a defective product?
A defective product is any item which has components that are not suitable for use for the purpose it was designed and manufactured for and are deemed unsafe. The fault can be the result of the following:
- An imperfection
- The inclusion of a dangerous substance
- A lack of adequate instructions
- An incorrect ingredients label
- A misleading or inadequate warning label
- A failure to recall a product they know is faulty
- A faulty mechanism
It is important to remember not to throw away a defective product or to return it to the retailer. By all means, inform them and show them the product, but keeping it as evidence is critical to your compensation claim.
What types of defective products can cause injuries?
Types of products that can cause injuries to include:
- Medicine or over-the-counter drugs
- Medical equipment, devices, implants and clothing
- Dental products
- Child safety equipment or prams
- Children’s toys, games and clothing
- Beauty products
- Technology devices
- Sporting equipment and clothing
- Gardening or DIY tools or safety wear
- A service, e.g. a beautician or repair company
By no means is this list exhaustive, so if you think you have been the victim of a defective product, it would be worth contacting a solicitor to see if you have a claim.
Who is at fault?
When a defective product has resulted in an injury, one party or multiple parties can be at fault in the items distribution chain. These include:
- The retailer
- The manufacturer
- The designer
- The marketer
- The repairer
- The installer
- The importer
- The distributor
More often than not, the fault ultimately lies with the manufacturer.
What are the laws?
The following UK laws protect consumers:
The Consumer Protection Act (1987) holds companies who make a defective product accountable and makes them fully responsible for the injuries incurred. It establishes that the liability for a faulty product lies with the manufacturer, the brand owner and the importer of the product. All the claimant needs to prove is that the product was defective, that it caused them an injury and that the defect and damage are linked.
The Consumer Rights Act (2015) states that ‘the quality of the goods is satisfactory if they meet the standard that a reasonable person would consider satisfactory, accounting for:
- Any description of the goods
- The price or other consideration for the goods and
- All the other relevant circumstances”
If the product is in breach, this law states that a consumer can seek damages and that a retailer or marketer is accountable if they have made misleading statements about the product.
Contact Waldrons Solicitors
At Waldrons Solicitors, our mission is to ensure that if you are a victim of a defective product, the manufacturer is held accountable and pays you compensation. We understand that an injury that is not your fault can cause you physical, mental and financial hardship and that a settlement can go some way to alleviating a portion of that burden. That’s why we operate on a no-win, no-fee basis to ensure you won’t have to pay a penny in legal fees if we can’t settle your claim.
However, at Waldrons Solicitors, we can reassure you that our award-winning personal injury lawyers have already secured millions of pounds in compensation for clients and are a Chambers 2023 leading firm. With professionalism, expertise and a personable demeanour, our lawyers will guide you through the process and always be on hand to support you. For advice on whether you have a claim, contact us today, without cost or obligation, by calling on the numbers below or by filling in our online form.
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Last reviewed on 11/07/23 by Joseph Norton who is an Associate Director and Solicitor