Many UK residents have had the unfortunate experience of being injured by defective products. When that happens, one needs to know where to turn for assistance to be compensated. To get adequate reimbursement from what you have experienced, it is essential that you’ve collect what’s described through the industry as imperative information. Those include your medical examination charges, your lost income, and all funds disbursed to assist with your recovery. While constructing the economic value from a defective product injury case, there are numerous important factors that you ought to be knowledgeable of in depth:
There is an obligation of all product manufacturers to be responsible in the case of accidents caused by defective products. This means that you are entitled to compensation if you were injured from defective products. Manufacturers know that there is the possibility of having a defective product when they are mass producing their items at such a high rate. These manufacturers are covered by insurance for just this reason. If you have suffered an injury caused by defective products,you need to be compensated accordingly. Too many people pass up the opportunity to make a defective product compensation claim for damages caused by these items.
Defective products are not limited to utensils and mechanical instruments alone, they can also include medicines and even make up or food products. Any product that is mass produced has the potential for being defective, and it is the job of the manufacturer to careful address these defects before they reach the public. Not doing so leaves them in jeopardy of injuring their customers and facing lawsuits to attain defective product compensation. You should never feel that injuries from defective products should be dismissed, and not act on being compensated.
If you find that you have been the victim of defective products, make sure that you know what it takes to be properly compensated. Waiting too long to act may mean the difference of being awarded money or not. As you are considering your next plan of action, make sure that you keep accurate records of your ordeal for when the time comes to meet with a defective product claim solicitor firm.
Consumer Protection Act 1987
The Department has produced a Guide to Consumer Protection Act 1987explaining the requirements in more detail. It is available as a PDF by clicking on the link above.
Key Facts – Consumer Protection Act 1987 (Part 1):
- Part 1 of the Consumer Protection Act 1987 transposes the Product Liability Directive (85/374/EEC and 1999/34/EC*) into UK law. The legislation imposes strict liability on producers for harm caused by defective products. *The 1999 Directive – extending coverage to food sold in its raw state – was transposed in England & Wales by the Consumer Protection Act 1987 (Product Liability) (Modification) Order 2000.
- This means that people who are injured by defective products can sue for compensation without having to prove the producer negligent, provided that they can prove that the product was defective and the defect in the product caused the injury.
- The legislation applies to all consumer products and products used at a place of work.
Key Facts – Consumer Protection Act 1987 (Part 2):
- The general safety requirement under section 10 of the Act has largely been replaced by the General Product Safety Regulations 2005.
- Section 11 empowers the Secretary of State to make emergency regulations without consultation to secure the safety of products when public protection is deemed necessary. Regulations made under this procedure lapse after 12 months.
- However, under normal circumstances, the Act requires prior consultation with interested parties. Safety regulations made under the procedure remain in force indefinitely, unless specifically revoked.
- Section 12 makes it an offence to supply goods that do not meet safety regulations made under the Act.
General Product Safety Regulations
The General Product Safety Regulations (GPS) 2005 which implement Directive 2001/95/EC, came into force in the UK on 1st October 2005.
On the same date the General Product Safety Regulations 1994 and section 10 of the Consumer Protection Act 1987 were repealed as they served no further purpose.
In principle, the 2005 Regulations apply to all products (new and second-hand) used by consumers, whether intended for them or not. The caveat to this is that product-specific legislation will continue to take precedence in areas where this has provisions with similar objectives to those of the GPS Regulations. There are also some exceptions to the cover for second-hand products.
The 2005 Regulations maintain the general duty placed on producers and distributors to place on the market (or supply) only products that are safe in normal or reasonable foreseeable use. The principal responsibility for day-to-day enforcement of the Regulations lies with local authorities.
For the first time, the Regulations recognise certain technical standards as carrying a presumption of conformity with the general safety requirement, meaning that products that comply with them are deemed to be safe. Such standards are referenced in the Official Journal of the European Union, and a link below will take you to the latest list of these European Standards on the European Commission website.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Q1. What products are covered by the Act?
All consumer goods and goods used in the workplace. All food is covered. Buildings are not covered but building materials such as bricks are covered.
Q2. When can an injured person sue?
A claimant must begin court action within 3 years of the date he or she was injured.
Q3. What sort of damage is covered?
A person can sue under the Act for compensation for death, personal injury and damage to private property (provided the amount of loss or damage to property is £275 or more).
Q4. Where can I get advice as a claimant?
Anyone considering making a claim should seek legal advice at an early stage. Seek advice from a pi solicitor or the Citizens Advice Bureau.
Q5. Does the Act include enforcement powers?
The Act sets out the powers available to the enforcement authorities to deal with unsafe products.
Q6. Who are the enforcement authorities?
Local authority trading standards departments have primary responsibility for day-to-day enforcement of safety legislation. The Secretary of State for Trade and Industry also has enforcement powers.
Q7. What is the punishment for offenders?
Failure to meet the requirements of safety regulations made under the Act can result in a fine of up to £5000 and/or a prison term of up to six months.
Q8. Where should complaints about unsafe products be sent?
Complaints about unsafe goods should be made to Consumer Direct on 08454 04 05 06. Consumers in Northern Ireland should contact Consumer Line on 0845 600 6262.