In a word, “no.” However, in those states that have the law known as “strict product liability,” the burden of proof is somewhat lower (= easier) than in states, like Virginia, that have not adopted the more modern view of product safety. Basic strict liability product liability requires a look at a book called the “Restatement of Torts (2d) 402A.” That section, “Special Liability of Seller of Product for Physical Harm to User or Consumer” states:
- One who sells any product in a defective condition unreasonably dangerous to the user or consumer or to his property is subject to liability for physical harm thereby caused to the ultimate user or consumer, or to his property, if the seller is engaged in the business of selling such a product, and it is expected to and does reach the user or consumer without substantial change in the condition in which it is sold.
- The rule stated in Subsection (1) applies although: the seller has exercised all possible care in the preparation and sale of his product, and the user or consumer has not bought the product from or entered into any contractual relation with the seller.
In other words, even if the person who is injured by a defective product did not buy the product, the plaintiff can still bring a lawsuit for their losses. Furthermore, as indicated above, suit can be brought against the seller, supplier and/or maker of the product. This is true where, the supplier, seller or designer “has exercised all possible care,” as they have the greater ability to avoid injury to the ultimate consumer. At ABRAMS LANDAU, we see cases from other states where this “Strict Product Liability” law is available. Using this law, we can seek compensation for clients injured by defective products. If you or anyone you know has been hurt by a defective product, give the team at ABRAMS LANDAU team a call.