What Damages Can I Receive in a Product Liability Claim?
When you purchase a product, you assume that the manufacturer has ensured it is free of any defects and is designed safely. But when manufacturers put faulty or dangerous products on the market, innocent consumers may be seriously harmed.
Did a dangerous or defective product hurt you? You may be entitled to pursue compensation from the manufacturer or other liable parties through a product liability claim. But what exactly can you recover money for? At Derek L. Hall, P.C., we’ve got answers to all of your questions.
Our Mississippi product liability lawyers fight for maximum compensation and justice for people who’ve been hurt by unsafe consumer products. Jackson attorney Derek Hall has 25 years of experience and a track record of success in obtaining top-dollar settlements and verdicts from large corporations and their insurers. You can count on us to advocate fiercely on your behalf.
Cases involving dangerous products are incredibly complex because it means going up against high-powered companies backed by corporate attorneys. The lawyers at Derek L. Hall, P.C., won’t back down and know what it takes to build cases that stand up to even the toughest challenges. If a defective product hurt you, call or contact us for a free case evaluation.
If you succeed in a product liability claim, you will — at a minimum — obtain recovery of compensatory damages. This is money for your financial losses stemming from your exposure to a defective or dangerous product.
Compensatory damages are intended to restore an injured victim to their condition prior to their injury. They are typically divided into two categories: economic damages and non-economic damages.
Economic damages, sometimes called “special damages,” include specific financial losses that a person incurs after being injured by a defective or dangerous product. Economic damages can usually be calculated by referencing documents and other financial information, such as bills, invoices, receipts, pay stubs, and income statements. For future economic damages, injured victims may rely on testimony from medical, vocational, and financial experts to provide a reliable estimation of future losses.
Examples of economic damages you may recover in a product liability claim include:
- Costs of medical treatment, including hospital bills, doctors’ appointments, surgeries, other medical procedures, physical/occupational therapy prescriptions, and medical or mobility equipment
- Costs of long-term care necessary after an accident, including home health services, residential care, or alterations to one’s residence (such as ramps or grab handles) to accommodate long-term disabilities
- Lost wages
- Loss of future earning capacity, including lost expected earnings and loss of employment benefits such as health insurance or pensions
- Compensation for property damaged or destroyed by the defective product
Non-economic damages, also known as “general damages,” are intended to compensate an injured victim for intangible losses they suffered due to their injuries. Unlike economic damages, which are quantifiable with objective facts and figures, non-economic damages are considered more subjective.
Rather than relying on bills or pay stubs, proving the amount of non-economic damages you may be entitled to in a product liability claim will often rely on witness testimony, including your own testimony, along with statements from family, friends, neighbors, and co-workers. These statements will focus on how the accident and injuries have impacted your life. Testimony may also be included from your treating physicians and medical and vocational experts to explain the limitations that your injuries will impose on your life.
Examples of non-economic damages include:
- Pain and suffering, or the physical pain and emotional distress you experience due to your injuries and subsequent medical treatment.
- Lost quality or enjoyment of life, which can result from embarrassment, humiliation, depression, or anxiety brought about due to physical disabilities, disfigurement, or scarring as a result of your injuries. Lost quality of life can also result from a reduction in your life expectancy due to your injuries.
- Loss of consortium/companionship, which compensates your spouse and/or close family members for the loss of your emotional support, affection, guidance, and care.
Product Liability — Punitive Damages
Unlike compensatory damages, which are intended to provide an injured victim money for losses they have incurred due to their injuries, punitive damages are awarded in product liability lawsuits to punish a manufacturer or other liable party for conduct that is considered particularly egregious or shocking by society’s standards. Punitive damages are also intended to serve as a warning against others from engaging in similar conduct in the future.
Punitive damages are rarely awarded in product liability claims. In most cases, juries and courts award punitive damages after finding that a manufacturer knew their product was dangerous, failed to recall the product, or even continued to market and sell the product, hiding evidence of its threat to public safety.
Contact a Product Liability Lawyer Today
If a dangerous or defective product has injured you, you deserve to seek financial compensation from the companies that put those harmful products on the market. But it’s important to take swift action, as corporations will act fast to protect themselves from any type of legal action.
Contact a product liability lawyer from Derek L. Hall, P.C. today for a free consultation on what types of damages may be available in your case. Call or fill out our online contact form right away to get started.