Category Archives: Products Liability

Gavel

Amazon Loses – It Is a Seller Under Wisconsin’s Products Liability Law


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As most subrogation professionals know, Amazon has been fighting products liability claims across the country for some time now. While it has been largely successful in doing so in the past, in a recent decision, Wisconsin sided with the plaintiff. In the case of State Farm Fire & Cas. Co. v. Amazon.com, Inc., 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 122316, 2019 WL 3304887, the United States District Court for the Western District of Wisconsin denied the motion for summary judgment filed by defendant Amazon.com, Inc. (Amazon). The court held that Amazon was so deeply involved with the transaction at issue that it was an entity that could be held strictly liable under Wisconsin law. It also held that 47 U.S.C. § 230 of the Communications Decency Act (CDA) did not immunize Amazon because its liability was not based on posting content from a third party. Continue reading

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Product Recall

Whirlpool Recalls Glass Cooktops with Touch Controls


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In subrogation cases where the insured’s damages were caused by a defective product, the fact that the product at issue is or was subject to a recall announced by the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) may help to establish that the product was defective when it left the manufacturer’s possession and control. On August 28, 2019, the CPSC announced the following recall related to a product that presents a fire hazard:

Whirlpool Recalls Glass Cooktops with Touch Controls Due to Burn and Fire Hazards.

According to the CPSC, “[t]he recalled cooktop surface elements can turn on by themselves, posing burn and fire hazards.”

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Recall Alert

At Home Recalls Shag Rugs


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In subrogation cases where the insured’s damages were caused by a defective product, the fact that the product at issue is or was subject to a recall announced by the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) may help to establish that the product was defective when it left the manufacturer’s possession and control. On August 27, 2019, the CPSC announced the following recall related to a product that presents a fire hazard:

At Home Recalls Shag Rugs Due to Violation of Federal Flammability Standard; Fire Hazard.

The CPSC posted the following information about the hazard:

The recalled large shag rugs fail to meet the federal flammability standard for carpets and rugs, posing a fire hazard. The small shag rugs fail to meet federal labeling requirements. Small rugs are not required to meet the federal flammability standard; however, they are required to be permanently labeled with the following statement: “FLAMMABLE (FAILS U.S. DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE STANDARD FF 2-70): SHOULD NOT BE USED NEAR SOURCES OF IGNITION.”

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Product Recall

Southwire Recalls Electrical Outlet Boxes


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In subrogation cases where the insured’s damages were caused by a defective product, the fact that the product at issue is or was subject to a recall announced by the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) may help to establish that the product was defective when it left the manufacturer’s possession and control. On August 20, 2019, the CPSC announced the following recall related to a product that presents a fire hazard:

Southwire Recalls Electrical Outlet Boxes Due to Fire Hazard.

According to the CPSC, “[t]he electrical receptacles can overheat when in use, posing a fire hazard.”

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Pointing out a Problem

In Indiana, Component Manufacturers Have a Limited Duty to Equip Products with Safety Features


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In reviewing a ruling on a motion for summary judgment that found that a component manufacturer owed no duty to install safety features, the Supreme Court of Indiana answered a narrow question that shifts the landscape for product liability litigation pursuant to the Indiana Product Liability Act (IPLA). Brewer v. PACCAR, Inc., 2019 Ind. LEXIS 428, involved a wrongful death claim against PACCAR, Inc. (PACCAR), the manufacturer of a glider kit that is installed on semi-trucks. The glider kit comes with a variety of optional safety features, provided they are specifically requested by the semi-truck manufacturer that integrates the kit into its end product. Continue reading

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Gavel

Superior Court Addresses Whether the Plaintiff Is the “Master of the Claim” in Post-Tincher Decision


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Since the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania decided Tincher v. Omega Flex, Inc., 104 A.3d 328 (Pa. 2014), parties proceeding in product liability cases in Pennsylvania often disagree about jury instructions. In Davis v. Volkswagen Grp. of Am., No. 1405 EDA 2018, 2019 Pa. Super. Unpub. LEXIS 2763, the Superior Court of Pennsylvania, in an unpublished opinion,[1] recently addressed whether the trial court gave proper jury instructions in a products liability case against Volkswagen entities, including Volkswagen Aktiengeselleschaft (Volkswagen). The court held that, despite a statement in Tincher that the plaintiff is the “master of the claim,” the trial court properly instructed the jury on both the consumer expectation test and the risk-utility test for establishing that the product at issue, a Volkswagen Passat, was in a defective condition. Continue reading

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Pointing out a Problem

New York Court Takes the Bite Out of a Food Manufacturer’s Request for Destructive Testing


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Although there are times when both parties agree on the need to perform destructive tests on an object, when the parties disagree, the party seeking the destructive tests must justify its request. In Doerrer v. Schreiber Foods, Inc., et al., No. 2017-08582, 2019 N.Y. App. Div. LEXIS 4743, the Second Department of the Supreme Court of New York’s Appellate Division recently explained what a defendant moving to secure destructive testing needs to show in order to perform the testing it seeks. Continue reading

This entry was posted in Food and Beverage, New York, Products Liability and tagged , , , .
Product Recall

Consumer Product Safety Commission Announces Multiple Fireworks Recalls


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In subrogation cases where the insured’s damages were caused by a defective product, the fact that the product at issue is or was subject to a recall announced by the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) may help to establish that the product was defective when it left the manufacturer’s possession and control. On June 26, 2019, the CPSC announced the following recalls related to fireworks products that present explosion and burn hazards:

Grandma’s Fireworks Recalls Fireworks Due to Violation of Federal Standards; Explosion and Burn Hazards;

GS Fireworks Recalls Fireworks Due to Violation of Federal Standards; Explosion and Burn Hazards; Sold Exclusively at GS Fireworks;

Patriot Pyrotechnics/Bill’s Fireworks Recalls Fireworks Due to Violation of Federal Standards; Explosion and Burn Hazards; Sold Exclusively at Patriot Pyrotechnics; and

Keystone Recalls G-Force Fireworks Due to Violation of Federal Standard; Explosion and Burn Hazards.

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Recall Alert

QTOP USA Recalls Led Work Light Replacement Bulbs


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In subrogation cases where the insured’s damages were caused by a defective product, the fact that the product at issue is or was subject to a recall announced by the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) may help to establish that the product was defective when it left the manufacturer’s possession and control. On June 25, 2019, the CPSC announced the following recall related to a product that presents a fire hazard:

QTOP USA Recalls LED Work Light Replacement Bulbs Due to Fire Hazard.

According to the CPSC, “[t]he LED replacement bulbs can overheat due to an electrical malfunction, posing a fire hazard.”

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Product Recall

Consumer Product Safety Commission Recalls Honeywell Smoke Sensors and H.E. Industrial Electric Heaters


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In subrogation cases where the insured’s damages were caused by a defective product, the fact that the product at issue is or was subject to a recall announced by the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) may help to establish that the product was defective when it left the manufacturer’s possession and control. On June 21, 2019, the CPSC announced the following recalls related to products that present fire-related hazards:

Honeywell Recalls Gamewell-FCI and Notifier Photoelectric Smoke Sensors Sold with Fire Alarm Systems Due to Failure to Alert of a Fire;

H.E. Industrial Recalls Electric Garage Heaters Due to Fire Hazard.

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