No Evidence? Case May Proceed.
“Although most product liability claims are based on direct evidence of a specific product defect, it is not uncommon for a plaintiff to set forth a product liability claim when the product itself is no longer available to be examined.” A product may no longer be available due to its destruction during the event which is part of the litigation. According to Eastman & Smith attorneys Stu Goldberg, Charles E. Hatch III and Nicholas W. Bartlett, plaintiffs still have options for when a key piece of evidence is not available.
“Where’s the Defective Product? Defending Product Liability Claims When the Product is Unavailable” is the article co-written by Messrs Goldberg, Hatch and Bartlett. They discuss case law behind why a product is not available as well as the ability to use circumstantial evidence to illustrate a product defect. Lastly the article outlines actions defense counsel can take to defend a client accused of a defective product. The article appears in the February 2022 issue of For the Defense, a publication of DRI. DRI is an organization comprised of defense attorneys as well as in-house counsel whose purpose includes educating its members for the improvement of their legal skills.
One area of practice in which Eastman & Smith member Mr. Goldberg practices is product liability. He has successfully defended a mixing machine manufacturer, maker of battery chargers and designer/building of a slag mill in cases involving their products. Associate Mr. Hatch defends professional, product and general liability claims as well as commercial litigation. Mr. Bartlett, a 2021 graduate of the University of Toledo Law School, is an associate in our Business Litigation Practice Group.