Foley Alabama Attorneys
(251) 444-7000

toll free 855.390.5566

Every year, numerous injuries are attributed to faulty or unsafe products. Product liability cases are a crucial aspect of consumer protection, aiming to protect people from the harmful consequences of defective products.

When a product causes harm or injury due to defects, a legal avenue opens up for those affected to seek compensation. Determining who can be held responsible in a product liability case involves thoroughly examining the parties involved in the product’s design, manufacturing, and distribution.


Manufacturers are typically the primary focus of product liability cases. They bear the responsibility of ensuring the safety and quality of their products. If a defect in design, manufacturing, or labeling causes harm to a consumer, the manufacturer may be held liable.

There are three main types of defects:

  • Design Defect: This occurs when the product’s design is inherently dangerous, even if it’s manufactured perfectly. In such cases, the entire line of products may be flawed.
  • Manufacturing Defect: If a product departs from its intended design due to an error in the manufacturing process, leading to a dangerous flaw, the manufacturer can be held liable.
  • Labeling Defect: Manufacturers must provide accurate and sufficient warnings and instructions regarding proper product usage. The manufacturer may be held responsible if these are inadequate or misleading and harm results.

Three main types of manufacturers could be held accountable:

  • Design Manufacturers: These are entities responsible for creating the initial product design. If a product’s design is inherently flawed and leads to injury or harm, design manufacturers might be held liable for negligence in the design process.
  • Component Manufacturers: If a product is made of various components supplied by different manufacturers, the component manufacturers can be held liable if their components are defective and contribute to the overall product’s failure.
  • Finished Goods Manufacturers: These entities assemble the final product from various components. If the finished product has a defect that causes harm, the finished goods manufacturer may be held responsible for the defects in the assembly process.

Distributors and Retailers

Distributors and retailers play a critical role in the product supply chain. While they may not be directly involved in the manufacturing or design process, they are responsible for ensuring that the products they distribute or sell meet safety standards. If a product defect occurs due to mishandling, improper storage, or lack of quality checks during distribution, these parties might be held liable for their negligence.

Wholesalers and Suppliers

Like distributors and retailers, wholesalers and suppliers are responsible for ensuring the products they provide are safe for consumers. If they are aware of defects or hazards associated with the products they supply and fail to take appropriate action. They may be held accountable for contributing to the injury caused by the defective product.

Sellers and Resellers

Entities that sell or resell products to consumers can also be held liable if they knowingly sell a defective product without adequate warnings or instructions. They have a duty to provide accurate information about the products they sell to help consumers make informed choices.

Who Has the Burden of Proof in Proving a Product Liability Case?

In a product liability case, the burden of proof typically rests on the plaintiff—the individual or party bringing the lawsuit—rather than the defendant (the party being sued). The plaintiff is responsible for presenting evidence and arguments demonstrating the defendant’s liability for the alleged harm caused by a defective product.

To successfully prove a product liability case, the plaintiff generally needs to establish the following elements:

  • Defective Product: The plaintiff must show that the product in question was defective in some way, due to design flaws, manufacturing defects, inadequate warnings or instructions, or other reasons.
  • Causation: The plaintiff needs to establish a link between the product’s defect and the harm or injury suffered. They must demonstrate that the defect directly led to the adverse consequences.
  • Injury or Harm: The plaintiff must provide evidence that they suffered actual injuries, damages, or losses from using the defective product.
  • Use as Intended or Foreseeable Use: The plaintiff must prove that they used the product as intended or reasonably foreseeable when the injury occurred.
  • Failure to Warn or Negligence: If the case is based on negligence or failure to warn, the plaintiff may need to demonstrate that the defendant was aware of or should have been aware of the product’s dangers and failed to adequately warn consumers.

It’s important to note that the burden of proof doesn’t mean the plaintiff has to prove their case beyond any doubt. Rather, the plaintiff needs to provide enough evidence and convincing arguments to establish their claims by a preponderance of the evidence, which means that it is more likely than not that the defendant’s liability caused the injury.

How Can Caldwell Wenzel & Asthana Product Liability Lawyers Help You?

Caldwell Wenzel & Asthana is a prominent law firm that handles cases in various areas of the law, including product liability. If you find yourself in a situation involving a defective product that has caused harm or injury, our product liability lawyers can offer valuable assistance in several ways:

Expertise and Experience:

Our product liability lawyers have in-depth knowledge and experience handling product liability cases. We understand the legal complexities, product liability laws, regulations, and precedents associated with product liability claims. This expertise allows us to provide informed guidance tailored to your specific situation.

Case Evaluation:

The initial step is to thoroughly evaluate your case. Our lawyers will review the details of the incident and examine the product’s design, manufacturing, distribution, and any warnings or instructions provided. This assessment helps determine the strength of your case and the potential parties that could be held liable.

Gathering Evidence:

Collecting evidence is crucial in proving the product’s defective nature and the resulting harm. Our product liability lawyers can help you gather evidence, such as product testing results, medical records, expert opinions, and incident documentation, to support your claim.

Building a Strong Legal Strategy:

Based on the evidence collected, our product liability lawyers will work to formulate a strong legal strategy. This strategy may involve deciding whether to pursue a negligence claim, strict liability claim, or other legal theories, depending on the circumstances of your case.

Negotiation and Settlement:

Many product liability cases are resolved through negotiation and settlement. Our lawyers are skilled negotiators who can engage with the parties at fault or their insurance companies to secure a fair settlement that compensates you for your injuries, medical expenses, lost wages, and other damages.

If you or your loved one has been injured or a fatality resulted from a defective product, contact our product liability lawyers at (214) 444-7000 for a free consultation.