Blogs By K Ryan

Inadequate warning labels can lead to product liability lawsuits.

Common Types of Product Liability Claims

If you or a loved one have been injured or suffered damages due to a product you used, you may have a product liability claim.

Every product has the potential to be defective. That’s why there are laws in place to protect consumers. When companies knowingly or unknowingly violate these laws, they put us all at risk.

Lytal, Reiter, Smith, Ivey & Fronrath believe in justice for victims. We have worked with thousands of individuals who have suffered losses due to a defective product. Our Florida product liability lawyers handle their claims, getting them the maximum compensation to ensure the company never makes the same mistake again.

If you have been injured due to a defective product, contact us today to find out if you have a product liability claim.

What is a product liability claim?

Product liability lawsuits provide legal recourse for victims of defective or dangerous products in the United States. Product liability laws vary from personal injury laws, sometimes making it easier for victims to recover damages.

When you file a product liability claim, you are holding the manufacturer or seller of the product accountable for distributing this dangerous item. Manufacturers and sellers are responsible for ensuring that their products meet a reasonable standard of safety in line with their duty of care.

A seller should ask themselves, “Does this product meet the ordinary expectations of the consumer?” If a product has an unexpected danger or defect, then it does not.

Product liability law varies from state to state. Work with a product liability lawyer to know your rights in your state.

Three Most Common Types of Product Liability Claims

There are three primary categories for product liability claims: defectively manufactured products, defectively designed products, and failure to provide adequate warning or instructions for use.

Defectively Manufactured Products

A defectively manufactured product is a product that is flawed due to an error in the production process. The product may normally be safe for use, but due to an error at the factory or the use of the wrong material, the product is now different from all the others on the market. This injury-causing product can hide in plain sight since most individuals will receive the non-defective product.

However, those who do receive the defects can suffer greatly.

If an individual uses the defectively manufactured product and suffers an injury, they may file a product liability complaint against the consumer. The injury must be suffered as a result of defective manufacturing.

For example, you can not file a product liability claim for a faulty scooter if you were injured due to your own poor steering, even if the scooter is faulty.

Examples of defectively manufactured products are:

  • A tainted batch of medicine containing a poisonous substance
  • Moped with defective tires
  • Electronic toy with faulty wiring
  • Bicycle with a cracked frame
  • Swing set with a weak chain

Defectively Designed Products

Some products have inherently dangerous designs. This is not a manufacturing error, so all of the products in the line will be equally dangerous and defective. Manufacturers may produce the item perfectly, but if the design is inherently flawed, the results will be as well.

You may wonder how defectively designed products ever make it to market. Sometimes they were not tested before being released or were only partially tested. In other cases, the company may have rushed to market without adequate review of the design.

Defectively designed products pose a high risk to consumers. From toys that are choking hazards to airbags that cannot withstand the impact of a collision, products that are not well designed can be life-threatening.

Examples of defectively designed products are:

  • Car’s steering system doesn’t work when put in reverse
  • Toy is smaller than a child’s esophagus and can cause choking
  • Toy can be easily broken by a child into pieces that are a choking risk
  • Truck tends to flip when turning corners
  • Sunglasses advertised as polarized cannot protect from UV rays
  • Hair dryer that electrocutes the user when turned on

Failure to Provide Adequate Warning or Instruction

Every product should come with proper instructions for use. If there are risks to using the product, those warnings should be displayed with adequate markings.

Customers shouldn’t assume that every product they purchase has a risk of harming them. It is the duty of the manufacturer and seller to ensure that these products are properly labeled.

Examples of this type of product liability claim are:

  • Children’s pajamas that are not labeled as highly flammable
  • Medication that does not include a warning of side effects when mixed with another common medication
  • Corrosive paint sold without instructions for safe handling
  • Energy drink without a warning not to mix with alcoholic drinks due to a dangerous side effect
  • A health food without a warning that it is not safe for pregnant women to consume

Contact a Product Liability Lawyer at Lytal, Reiter, Smith, Ivey & Fronrath

Thousands of United States citizens are injured annually due to defective products. They may not know that they can file a type of product liability claim or who to file their claim against. With the help of a product liability lawyer, these victims can get the justice they deserve.

Lytal, Reiter, Smith, Ivey & Fronrath fight for victims. We work diligently to get you the maximum damages you need to overcome your injuries and ensure that the responsible party is held liable for their actions.

Together, we can work toward a safer society where consumers don’t have to fear the products they use.

Pregnant woman hospitalized holds her stomach apprehensively.

How common are pregnancy-related deaths?

Unfortunately, over 700 women die annually due to pregnancy-related complications in the United States. This statistic shows that it is far too common in our society.

Pregnancy is a time of change for women’s bodies. Most of these changes are normal and completely healthy. However, some changes can be important to note as they can be signs of complications in the pregnancy.

Pregnancy-related deaths can occur while a woman is pregnant or up to one year from giving birth if it is due to a complication from pregnancy or an aggravated condition as a result of a pregnancy that leads to death.

If your loved one has passed away from a pregnancy-related death, you should consider her medical treatment. In some cases, medical malpractice causes these deaths that could have been avoided with proper care.

United States Statistics on Pregnancy-Related Deaths

  • 30.5% of pregnancy-related deaths occur before birth.
  • 700-900 women die every year in the United States due to a pregnancy-related death.
  • The maternal mortality rate in the US is difficult to track, but it has at least doubled in the last 25 years.
  • In 2015, the US maternal mortality rate was higher than that of Iran, Libya, and Turkey. It is also at least 15 points higher than other developed countries like Australia and Canada.
  • Cardiovascular conditions were the leading cause of pregnancy-related death from 2014-2017.
  • 6.7% of pregnancy-related deaths are from unknown causes.
  • Black Americans are the most at-risk ethnic group to suffer a pregnancy-related death. Over 41% of pregnancy-related deaths in 2017 were of black Americans.
  • Women in America are three times more likely to die a pregnancy-related death than a woman in Canada.

Causes of Pregnancy-Related Deaths

There are many potential causes of death among maternal women. They vary based on the age, ethnicity, and social class of the mothers. However, there are some common causes of pregnancy-related deaths that occur amongst all demographics:

  • Bleeding and hemorrhages
  • Heart conditions and heart attacks
  • Infection or sepsis, especially following C-sections
  • Heart failure or pulmonary embolism
  • Blood clots or embolisms
  • Preeclampsia or eclampsia and other hypertensive disorders
  • Mental health conditions, such as pre or post-partum depression
  • Cerebrovascular accidents
  • Anesthesia complication

Women are at higher risk if they have any of the following conditions:

  • Diabetes
  • Existing chronic heart disease
  • Existing chronic health conditions such as hypertension
  • Over the age of 40
  • Existing mental illness
  • High blood pressure

By doing the following, women can decrease their risk of pregnancy-related death:

  • Eat a healthy diet
  • Maintain a healthy weight or lose weight if clinically obese
  • Be physically active, within reason
  • Quit smoking, drinking, and any other substance abuse
  • Avoid injuries as best they can
  • Have regular doctor’s visits to get appropriate medical advice

Medical Malpractice and Pregnancy-Related Deaths

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that 60% of pregnancy-related deaths are preventable. Pregnant women trust their doctors to care for them and provide adequate medical treatment throughout their pregnancy and postpartum. When a doctor does not live up to this expectation, they put the woman’s life at risk.

Medical errors and negligence are leading causes of pregnancy-related deaths. Medical malpractice can exacerbate dangerous conditions. Some conditions that could have been prevented, left untreated, can result in death.

The leading types of medical malpractice that cause pregnancy-related death are:

  • Delays in diagnosis
  • Misses diagnosis
  • Improper policies and procedures
  • Inappropriate treatment or mistreatment
  • Lack of knowledge
  • Failure to educate patients on warning signs
  • Unavailability of medical staff
  • Lack of coordination of care
  • Improper assessment and analysis of symptoms
  • Not listening to a patient’s symptoms
  • Inadequate training
  • Failure to seek specialist consultation
  • Inadequate communication
  • Lack of outreach and support

What to Do When Negligence Leads to Pregnancy-Related Death

It is clear that medical professionals in the United States need to do better for their maternal patients. With other developed countries having significantly lower pregnancy-related death rates, it is clear that the preventable deaths in the US are too high.

Examinations by Stanford University have found that when medical professionals have adequate tools, education, and communication skills, the maternal mortality rate drops significantly.

If you have lost a loved one due to pregnancy-related death, you may have a claim for medical malpractice.

Filing a medical malpractice claim is challenging. You will be taking on a hospital that has a large legal defense team in place. However, if you have a claim for damages, you deserve to be heard. That’s why Lytal, Reiter, Smith, Ivey & Fronrath are the right legal team for you. Our experienced medical malpractice lawyers won’t rest until they get you the damages you deserve.

We will handle the complicated process of determining fault, collecting evidence, and getting you maximum compensation. All you have to do is grieve in peace while we do the hard work.

A Medical Malpractice Lawyer Can Help

When you or a loved one are harmed by your medical caretaker, your losses are significant. You lose trust in the healthcare professionals in our country. You lose a family member and the mother of a new child. You’ll also suffer financial losses with medical bills and funeral expenses.

Lytal, Reiter, Smith, Ivey & Fronrath believe in holding the responsible party accountable. They are liable for your loved one’s death, so they should carry the burden of your losses, not you.

Call us today to speak with a Florida medical malpractice lawyer. We’ll discuss the next steps and how we intend to get you justice.

A stone cherub and yellow flowers decorate the grave of a wrongful death victim

Who can file a wrongful death claim?

Losing a loved one is one of the most tragic things that can happen to a person. If that loss was due to someone else’s negligence, it can be more challenging to overcome your grief.

When these tragic accidents happen, you need closure. One of the best ways to get justice for your lost loved one is to file a wrongful death claim, where you can get financial compensation so you aren’t in debt for someone else’s mistake.

Wrongful death lawsuits allow you to get closure by holding the negligent party responsible. However, not everyone can file a wrongful death claim in Florida.

What is a wrongful death claim?

A wrongful death claim is a personal injury lawsuit where the negligent party’s actions resulted in the death of your loved one. Whether the action was intentional or not, the at-fault party is liable to pay for the damage that they caused.

Wrongful deaths can occur in a variety of personal injury situations, including:

  • Medical malpractice
  • Auto accidents
  • Pedestrian collisions
  • Defective products
  • Slip and falls
  • Homicide

Filing a wrongful death lawsuit allows you to seek financial compensation to help offset the losses resulting from the death of your loved one. It is also a way to seek justice for the negligent death and to prevent future accidents from resulting in the loss of someone else’s life.

Although no criminal charges can be pressed in a wrongful death lawsuit, the justice that families gain from this form of civil suit can help them get closure for their loss.

Who can file a wrongful death claim in Florida?

According to Florida Statute Section 768.19, only the Personal Representative named in the deceased person’s will may file a wrongful death claim. If the deceased died without a Personal Representative, one will be named by the court.

Personal Representative is another term for an estate trustee or executor, someone named by the deceased to handle the distribution of their estate. In most cases, it is a spouse, family member, or close friend. This person will act in the interest of the deceased’s estate.

Ultimately, the damages recovered by the claim will not be given to the Personal Representative. It is added to the deceased’s estate and distributed to all the named heirs. This means that a wrongful death claim involves everyone named in the deceased’s will, such as their spouse, children, and adoptive relatives.

Additionally, the family of the deceased can sue for damages that affected them due to the negligent death. For example, they can file a claim for pain and suffering or lost income that the deceased provided to their household.

The family members that can sue are:

  • Spouses
  • Minor children
  • Adult children, if there is no surviving spouse
  • The deceased’s parents, when there are no other survivors

Florida Wrongful Death Statute of Limitations

Wrongful death claims in Florida must be filed within two years of the date of the deceased’s death. This means that if the individual dies due to medical malpractice from five years prior, you can still file a wrongful death claim.

Speak to an attorney if the statute of limitations has expired. In some circumstances, they can ask for a postponed claim.

What damages can you collect?

Civil court cases can only be resolved through financial means. According to the Florida Statutes Section 768.21, the estate and the survivors are both entitled to damages for the negligent death.

The estate can file for damages relating to the deceased, including their emotional suffering leading up to their death. The Personal Representative will represent the estate to collect damages that the deceased lost due to the accident. For example:

  • Medical expenses
  • Funeral expenses (since these are often paid out of the estate)
  • Lost earnings
  • Loss of net accumulations, determined based on how much more the estate would have been worth if the individual had not perished due to negligence
  • Pain and suffering while the deceased was alive

The survivors, such as spouses and children, can file claims for their losses relating to the negligent death. These are financial and emotional losses that they suffered as a direct result of losing their loved one.

These include:

  • Loss of support
  • Loss of financial contribution to the household
  • Loss of companionship
  • Pain and suffering
  • Any expenses paid by the survivor that related to the deceased’s hospital bills and/or funeral expenses

Contact a Wrongful Death Attorney in Florida for Assistance

Before worrying about who can file a wrongful death claim, you must first establish that the deceased’s passing was due to wrongful death. From there, you can make sure that you are eligible to file for compensation under Florida law.

Many factors can complicate your ability to file a wrongful death claim, including nuances of relationships and financial dependency issues.

Wrongful death claims are much more complex than basic personal injury claims. You should always seek legal counsel from an experienced wrongful death attorney before you file a wrongful death claim in Florida. If you don’t, you risk losing your opportunity to collect damages that are rightfully owed to you.

Ensure you get justice for your loved one and prevent another deadly accident from occurring with the help of Lytal, Reiter, Smith, Ivey & Fronrath. Our wrongful death attorneys offer free consultations so we can show you our value before you commit to working with us.