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Products That Fail

by Richard J. Doyle

Ever since the initial studies about product liability in law school, the mystery of determining how catastrophic injuries can occur from the failure of a manufacturer to take the proper safety and testing precautions, and what could’ve easily and readily been done to avoid such tragic consequences, has continued to fascinate me. In fact, my very first lengthy and complicated complaint filed as I began the practice of law, many years ago, involved a product liability. It was a question of the failure of a towbar which broke off causing the towed vehicle to enter into the oncoming lane of traffic resulting in death and severe injury. It was then that I learned the importance of obtaining good experts. In that case it was forensic engineers, who found the faulty forging of the steel bar involved in the tow bar.

Since then and over the years I have been involved in numerous product liability claims, many of which only involve the necessity of the use of a simple guard or protective device. The failure to do so, in order for a manufacturer to add a few extra dollars to their profit margin, has often stunned me with the immorality of big business. Too often, even when caught and forced to pay millions of dollars in claims to those persons that have been injured or killed, and even huge fines sometimes assessed by the government, these companies still make millions and even billions in profits.

We are have recently paid out hundreds of thousands of dollars to each of my clients that suffered due to implantation of the DePuy metal on metal hip. These hips had to be re-replaced. Some people are not recovering well while others are doing quite well but the lifespan of their second hip replacement is definitely shortened as a result of this poorly designed implant.

We are also working on cases involving faulty hip replacements designed by Wright.  Many of these clients came to me because they preferred a local attorney to work with. Although I associated with one of the attorneys who was on the steering committee for the multi district litigation (MDL), I handled all of these cases individually on behalf of each client. Because I did not have hundreds of these clients, each got personalized treatment. Further, this individualized care will continue for several more years. I will assist those who had complications to get supplementary assistance and help those who wish to carefully spend their money for a new home, new car or other needs. As I said in the statement of my philosophy, I believe in the holistic approach and try to reach out to make help possible for the entire family so my representation and interest does not disappear as soon as a fee is paid.

Another area that many people think of as product liability, I have treated separately under the title of an article called “pharmaceuticals that harm”. Please refer to that article with regard to bad drugs or other medications given.