Most categories for the basis of personal injury require proof of negligence. Manufacturing defects, however, fall under strict liability. This means that even if there is no negligence on the part of the manufacturer, it can still be held liable for any injuries or deaths that result from manufacturing defects.
Manufacturing defects are defined as an unintentional departure from the design of the product which renders the product dangerous to consumers or users. Under the strict liability rule, manufacturing defects renders the manufacturer liable even if “all possible care was exercised in the preparation and marketing of the product” (American Law Institute, Restatement (Third) of Torts: Products Liability).
Victims of manufacturing defects can sue for compensation for their injuries. Some manufacturing defects have more serious consequences for the user than others, such as car parts. A defective brake, for example, or faulty ignition assembly can malfunction at any time and case a catastrophic accident for the driver, passengers, and other people or vehicles that may be in the immediate vicinity. This can render the car part manufacturer liable for all the injuries or deaths resulting from an accident caused by the defective part.
However, it is not always easy to prove that a part was defective, or that it was this defect that caused an accident. In a car accident, for example, the damage to the car may be so extensive that determining whether a part was defective or not may be impossible. The defense may also propose that it was human error rather than a defective part that was responsible for the incident.
Because the legal ramifications of a manufacturing defects claim can be difficult for a layman to follow, consultation with a products liability lawyer should be the first order of business. It is important to establish as early as possible whether manufacturing defects was the cause of an accident, and a lawyer experienced in these matters will know what steps to take to accomplish this.