Home Law Product Liability: Who to Sue and What to Prove

Product Liability: Who to Sue and What to Prove

by Paul Petersen

Product liability law was formed to help a consumer recover damages for injuries acquired while using a defective product. This law places liability on persons in a distribution chain that provided a defective product to a consumer.

In simple terms, it means that if you acquire any injuries from using a product, and the cause of that cannot be attributed to you but the manufacturer or the seller, then you can hire a personal injury lawyer and are entitled to collect damages.

We’ll discuss when to sue for product liability, who to sue, and what you have to prove to win in court.

When to sue for product liability

The product liability law requires that a product meets the ordinary expectations of a consumer. Let’s say that you buy a steaming iron. From the manual and marketing, you expect the iron to reach a certain temperature, to be regulated, and for it to last at least one year.

What if you find that the steaming iron can’t properly regulate temperature thereby damaging your clothes or that it breaks down within 6 months? Then, you’re qualified to sue for product liability. This law applies to anything you buy, from drugs and canned foods to household and kitchen items.

Who to sue for product liability

Product liability affects persons in the distribution chain. This involves everyone from the manufacturer to the retailer. The manufacturer, the wholesaler, the retailer, and even the salespeople. However, when suing for a product defect, you don’t just send out subpoenas to anyone.

First, you identify what defect the product has, who in the distribution chain is most likely to be responsible, and then sue that person. So, if the steaming iron breaks down way before the warranty period is over, the manufacturer may be responsible for it. It is recommended that you hire a lawyer to help you decide who to sue.

What to prove in a product liability lawsuit

To win a product liability lawsuit, the plaintiff has to prove that there was a defect and that it made the product unreasonably dangerous. The lawyer has to prove that the defect was not caused by you and that the responsibility falls on the manufacturer.


To get a personal injury lawyer, check out Shoop, a law firm that will provide you with die-hard personal injury attorneys. We’ve been working on product liability cases for decades and have won large settlements for our clients. If you want a lawyer that will fight the hardest for you, contact us immediately.