Indiana Product Liability Claims: Key Points to Know

Suffering an injury from a product that you trust to be safe can be a harrowing experience. Whether it’s a malfunctioning vehicle part, a hazardous household appliance, or a harmful pharmaceutical drug, dealing with the aftermath of a defective product can be overwhelming.

For residents of Indiana facing such a situation, understanding their rights and the legal process is a crucial step towards seeking justice and recovery. This comprehensive guide is designed to empower consumers and injured individuals with the knowledge necessary to pursue a product liability claim in Indiana.

Call 317-881-2700 When You Need a Defective Product Attorney in Indianapolis Indiana
Call 317-881-2700 When You Need a Defective Product Attorney in Indianapolis Indiana

The Scope of Product Liability in Indiana

Product liability refers to the legal responsibility of manufacturers, distributors, suppliers, and retailers for the products they make available to consumers. In Indiana, product liability law is grounded in the principle that those involved in bringing a product to market are responsible for ensuring it is reasonably safe for its intended use.

Types of Product Defects

The law recognizes three primary types of product defects:

  1. Design Defects: These occur when the product’s initial design is flawed, making the product inherently unsafe.
  2. Manufacturing Defects: This type of defect happens during production. It means that the product deviates from its intended design, making it more dangerous than intended.
  3. Marketing Defects: Also known as “information defects,” these occur when the product lacks proper instructions or warnings, or when the marketing fails to inform consumers of potential hazards appropriately.

Legal Framework in Indiana

Indiana’s legal framework for product liability claims is primarily found in two sources:

  1. Indiana Code Title 34: The section pertaining to product liability governs lawsuits for injuries caused by dangerous or defective products. It outlines the procedures for filing a claim and potential damages.
  2. Court Decisions: In Indiana, court decisions can also establish and clarify the law, especially where statutes are silent or ambiguous on specific issues.

Filing a Product Liability Claim in Indiana

Filing a product defect claim involves a series of steps, each with particular requirements and considerations.

Requirements and Procedures

To have a successful product liability claim in Indiana, you must demonstrate the following:

  1. You were injured or suffered losses.
  2. The product had a defect that caused your injury or loss.
  3. The defect existed at the time the product left the control of the manufacturer.
  4. You were using the product as intended at the time of the injury.

The legal procedures for filing a claim are complex and will require significant evidence and legal justification. This often involves working closely with an experienced attorney who can guide you through the process.

Statute of Limitations

In Indiana, the statute of limitations for defective product claims is generally two years from the date of the injury. It’s essential to be aware of this time frame, as the court will likely dismiss any claim brought after this period has expired.

Types of Compensation Available

A successful product liability claim can result in several forms of compensation, also known as “damages.”

Damages for Injuries and Losses

Compensatory damages are awarded to make the injured party whole by covering:

  1. Medical expenses related to the injury, pain and suffering
  2. Lost wages, if the injury causes the claimant to miss work
  3. Property damage resulting from a defective product
  4. Any other economic losses incurred due to the injury

Punitive Damages

In cases where the defendant’s conduct is exceptionally reckless or egregious, punitive damages may be awarded. The purpose of punitive damages is to punish the defendant and deter similar conduct in the future.

Hiring an Attorney for Your Product Liability Claim

Navigating the legal system with a product liability claim can be daunting, especially given the complexities involved. It is highly recommended to seek the expertise of a qualified attorney.

Importance of Legal Representation

An attorney experienced in product liability claims can:

  1. Provide a clear understanding of your rights and legal options
  2. Defend your interests against the legal teams of potentially large and well-funded companies
  3. Manage the complex legal process, including filing paperwork and negotiating with insurers
  4. Gather and present necessary evidence to support your claim

How to Choose the Right Attorney

When selecting a lawyer for your product liability claim, consider the following:

  1. Experience with product liability cases
  2. A record of successful cases with substantial settlements or jury awards
  3. Clear and transparent communication about your case
  4. A contingency fee structure, where you only pay legal fees if you win your case

By selecting the right lawyer, you significantly increase your chances of a favorable outcome in your claim.

Wrapping Up

Remember, you have legal rights as a consumer, and the law is on your side when it comes to holding negligent parties accountable for the products they have placed into the market. Don’t hesitate to explore your options and take action towards seeking the compensation you deserve.

With this comprehensive guide in hand, you are now equipped to approach the process of filing a product liability claim with confidence and clarity. Don’t bear the burden of a product manufacturer’s mistake alone—reach out to a trusted attorney, and take the first step towards justice and recovery.

If you or a loved one has been injured by a defective product in Indiana, it’s important to act swiftly and decisively. Contact the Law Office of Craven, Hoover & Blazek, P.C. at 317-881-2700 to schedule a free case evaluation with a seasoned product liability lawyer in Indianapolis, Indiana. We represent victims all throughout the state, plus Indiana residents injured in other states and residents of other states injured in Indiana.

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