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Product Liability Settlements

Written by Kathleen Gagne
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Product liability settlements result from the successful litigation of liability claims in a court of law or in pre-trial negotiations. The cases the public hears about most are those that result in multi-million dollar awards or those that affect a large number of people. Many of those cases take years to conclude, and some have a significant impact on how a particular industry operates.

Large Product Liability Settlements

While the cases described above resulted in large settlements, remember that the recipients of those huge sums have also suffered greatly. In most court systems today, there is a backlog of product liability cases on the the docket. In spite of some of the huge settlements, many claimants do not receive a penny for their suits, especially those that are filed frivolously. That's why, if you are considering a product liability lawsuit, you should work with an attorney who specializes in and has won a number of similar cases.

Many product liability settlements are agreed upon by both parties before the case ever gets to court. In the current atmosphere of consumer protection that is a direct result of many of the early product liability claims settlements, many companies actually take responsibility for their errors. Others simply want to avoid the possibility of a jury awarding a significantly higher settlement amount than they can negotiate at a bargaining table.

Negotiating Product Liability Settlements

In some cases, a pre-trial negotiation also benefits the claimant. Long trials and hours on a witness stand recalling and describing extremely painful events can be very stressful. Avoiding the possible trauma of that process, especially when children are involved, is a viable option. The end result should include, however, changes to the product as well as the settlement.

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