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difference between Product Liability, Premises Liability & Slip and Fall

Product liability cases involve injuries caused by unsafe products. Premises liability cases are those in which a person is injured on someone else’s property. Slip and fall cases are a category of premises liability cases and occur when someone slips or trips and gets injured in the fall. Some people use the terms premises liability and slip and fall interchangeably.

Product Liability Cases

In order to have a successful product liability case you need to be able to prove a few things:

1 – There was some type of product defect
2 – The defect resulted in you being injured
3 – The manufacturer and seller owed you a duty to make/sell you a safe product

You also need to be able to show you weren’t doing anything unsafe and against manufacturer recommendations with the product.

For example, if an aerosol can of hair spray on your bathroom counter randomly exploded and you were hurt by flying metal, you may have a case. If you were trying to create a homemade flamethrower by holding up a lighter and spraying the hair spray into it, you likely wouldn’t have a case.

Making a flamethrower is not a legitimate, manufacturer-recommended use of that product. The hairspray bottle may even have an explicit warning to avoid use around open flame.

Those types of warnings are specifically intended to prevent injuries and lawsuits.

If you do have a product liability case, you may be able to collect damages from several sources. Depending on the specifics of your case the manufacturer of the hair spray, the manufacturer of the bottle, the distributor and the store that sold you the product could be held liable.

Premises Liability and Slip and Fall Cases

Premises liability cases, such as slip and falls, have similar thresholds a plaintiff needs to meet. For example, you likely won’t have a successful premises liability case if you were the one who was responsible for the hazard that caused your injury. There’s a certain level of personal accountability and a grace period for the property owner to fix the hazard before they are considered negligent.

The plaintiff in a premises liability case generally needs to show:

1 – The owner of the property (or employees) knew about the hazards
2 – You were owed a duty of safety (weren’t trespassing)
3 – The owner failed to do anything to clean up/fix the hazards in a reasonable amount of time
4 – You slipped, tripped or fell as a result of the hazards
5 – You were injured and suffered damages as a result

If the owner was unaware or could not have been reasonably expected to know about the danger, you likely won’t have a case. If you fall down and aren’t injured or don’t require medical attention you likely won’t have a case.

However, if you can show that employees at a grocery store knew about a spill you slipped in and did nothing to clean it up, the store could be liable for the injuries resulting from your fall.

Duty of Care

One thing premises liability and product liability cases have in common is a duty of care.

The manufacturers and retailers of products you purchase owe you a duty to make and sell safe products.

Property owners owe you a duty to provide a safe premises in which to shop, work or live. Trespassers – unless they are children – are generally not afforded the same duty as invited guests or workers on a property.

If manufacturers, distributors, retail stores or property owners fail to uphold their duty and you are injured, you should be compensated for the damages that result.

Damages are an important aspect of premises liability and slip and fall cases. Being injured isn’t enough. You need to be able to prove damages that warrant compensation.

What to Do If Your Injured in a Slip and Fall or By a Dangerous Product

Documentation and evidence are vital if you’ve been injured in this type of accident. Unlike a car accident injury, there likely won’t be any police report to use as evidence. It will be up to you and your attorneys to make the case.

You should receive medical attention as soon as possible after your injury. Official documentation of your injuries, the source of the injuries and the cost of treating them is often key evidence for a product liability or premises liability case.

Get Slip and Fall, Premises Liability or Product Liability Representation in Newnan

Have you been injured by a dangerous or defective product? Did you slip, trip, fall or were otherwise injured on someone else’s property due to poor maintenance or construction defects?

The attorneys at the Law Office of Johnny Phillips are committed to helping injured Georgia residents get the representation and compensation they deserve. You have a right to safety and health. If someone fails to uphold their duty to you and you’re injured as a result, we will help you fight for the compensation you deserve.

Call 833.564.6693 to schedule a free consultation.