How Bad Warning Labels Can Lead to Product Liability Lawsuits

Sep 24, 2017 — by Chris Olsen
Tags: Product Liability

A recall labelWe often take everyday products for granted when it comes to their safety. Yet the fact of the matter is that products can be dangerous for a wide variety of reasons, and it's important that companies look out for consumers by issuing proper warnings and warning labels. When a product is not properly labeled, the manufacturer may be liable for consumer injuries.

We have helped clients throughout San Diego with product liability lawsuits over inadequate warning labels and instructions. Let's explore these issues in a bit of detail below.

Warning Labels Can Prevent Injuries and Accidents

We've all used products that have some sort of warning label on them. That may be a simple note that the liquid being used is flammable and/or harmful if ingested, or that could mean info on the right way to use an electronic device or kitchen equipment.

Whatever the case may be, warning labels are as crucial as proper instructions when it comes to ensuring consumer safety. Sadly, there are times when companies fail to put proper warning labels on products, which can lead to serious and even fatal injuries.

Expectations About Warning Labels

When it comes to warning labels, there are a few key expectations that consumers expect:

  • Warning Labels Are Visible – Any warnings about the dangers of a product need to be visible and clearly marked on the packaging and/or the product itself. The warnings should not be hidden in the fine print. For example, the "warning" sign should be relatively large and easy to see. A warning of electric show may be accompanied by a symbol of a lightning bolt.

  • Warnings Are Clearly Worded – Any warnings about a product need to be written clearly so that consumers understand the dangers posed by the product and what harm may come of it. For example, toys with small parts should note that the toy poses a choking hazard to young children of a certain age group.

  • Warnings Prevent Potential Harm – Warning labels should inform consumers of potential harm and suggest steps to prevent injury. For example, an oven cleaning product will note dangers of inhalation and skin irritation. To avoid these dangers, the label may suggest proper ventilation and/or use of a face mask as well as wearing gloves.

These all seem like common sense expectations when it comes to warning labels, and yet companies sometimes fail to meet even these simple expectations.

What Is an Inadequate Warning Label?

An inadequate warning label is one that does not inform consumers of the obvious dangers of a product when it is used properly. Failure to warn a consumer of a hazard in a clear and specific manner could be a negligent act on the part of the product's manufacturer.

Related to these issues, the instructions for the proper use of a product need to note any dangers and what can be done to prevent harm. Good instructions and visible warning labels protect consumers and demonstrate that a company has the consumer's safety and well-being in mind.

Holding Companies Accountable

Proving that a product's manufacturer was negligent or that it failed to warn consumers about the risks of a product can be difficult. That's why having legal help on your side is so crucial with these kinds of product liability claims. An injury lawyer will advocate for your legal rights and help ensure other consumers are protected from harm. Safety standards may be able to be improved industry wide thanks to these kinds of cases.

Learn More About Product Liability Lawsuits

For more information about your legal options and how we can help with your case, be sure to contact an experienced product liability attorney today. Our team will fight for your legal rights every step of the way, holding negligent companies accountable.

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