As consumers we all make the assumption that the products we purchase and use have been tested and are safe for our use. In most cases, that assumption is correct; however, defective products do manage to slip through into the marketplace and cause injuries to consumers. In fact, defective products cause far more injuries each year than most people realize. If you have been injured by what you believe to be a defective product you could be entitled to compensation for your injuries. Likewise, if you are the surviving family member of someone who was fatally injured by a defective product you could be entitled to compensation for your loss.
Compensation for a Product Liability Case in San Diego
While the amount of compensation to which you are entitled can only be determined by an experienced San Diego product liability attorney after carefully reviewing the facts and circumstances of the case, the type of compensation, or “damages” in legal terms, available in a product liability case based on negligence can be explained without a detailed review. Both economic and non-economic damages are potentially available to a victim in a product liability case in San Diego. Economic damages, also referred to as “special” damages, are intended to compensate a victim for out of pocket expenses such as medical bills and lost earnings. Calculating your economic damages is typically much easier than calculating the value of your non-economic damages because you will usually have a bill or statement showing a quantifiable dollar amount.
Non-economic, or general, damages are intended to compensate a victim for the emotional trauma caused by the injuries. People frequently use the term “pain and suffering” compensation when discussing non-economic damages; however, this type of compensation actually covers more than just pain and suffering. Disability, disfigurement, loss of use, humiliation, and mental anguish as well as loss of love, support and companionship, and emotional distress are all potentially part of the non-economic damages portion of a product liability award or settlement. Because these injuries are more subjective in nature they are much harder to quantify than economic damages.
In rare cases, punitive damages may also be available in a product liability case in San Diego. Economic and non-economic damages are intended to compensate a victim for actual injuries suffered as a result of the negligent conduct of the defendant. Punitive damages, on the other hand, are intended to punish the defendant for wrongdoing. As such, punitive damages are only awarded when the defendant’s conduct was particularly egregious.
If you have suffered injuries because of a defective product, consult with an experienced San Diego product liability attorney as soon as possible. The personal injury lawyers at Martinez & Schill can assist you with evaluating your case.