What is The Legal Definition of a Defective Product?

Not every product that causes harm is defective. We examine the definition.

Every year, people across the country suffer injuries due to defective or faulty products. Defective product injuries can be severe and cause long-term damage that significantly impacts your life. A product liability lawsuit can help you gain financial compensation for your suffering.

What is The Definition of a Defective Product ?

U.S. Legal gives the legal definition of a defective product as:

“A product is in a defective condition if it is unreasonably dangerous to the user or to (the) consumer who purchases the product and causes physical harm.”

The defective product definition applies to any item. Some examples of defective products are:

  • A drug that has been contaminated on the production line and produces adverse effects in users
  • Faulty brake pads in a car where the fault occurred at the point of manufacture and led to car accidents
  • A home appliance where the wiring is faulty and caused electrocution

What are The Types of Defect Liability ?

There are three categories of defect liability and being able to identify these can help confirm you have a legitimate claim.

Defectively Manufactured Products

Defectively manufactured products are the most common type of product liability suit. In this category, the error happened at some point during the manufacturing process. Perhaps inferior quality materials were used, the settings on machines were wrong, or there was a problem with the manufacturing machinery.

Defectively Designed Products

In defectively designed products, faults arise from the design of the product. An example of a defectively designed product is a recalled car. A defect in the design of the car’s components causes the vehicle to become dangerous, and the entire line of cars needs to be taken off the road.

Failure to Warn

Failure to warn refers to the manufacturer’s failure to give full and proper advice to the end-user regarding the operation, consumption, or use of the product. One of the most common examples of this you will see is where medication can have adverse side effects, but the manufacturer fails to warn of them on the packaging.

What are The Pennsylvania Laws on Defective products ?

There are several aspects of Pennsylvania law pertaining to defective products and liability. Your Philadelphia personal injury lawyer can evaluate your case and advise you on whether your claim is legitimate. The main things to know are:

Statute of limitations

The Pennsylvania statute on defective product claims is two years from the date any injury occurred as a result of a defect.

Statute of repose

The statute of repose in Pennsylvania is 12 years. This statute supersedes the statute of limitations. If the defect in the product happened 12 years or more before any accident that caused an injury, you cannot make a claim against the manufacturer.


In cases of fraudulent concealment, Pennsylvania allows for discovery to override the statute of limitations, which means that the two-year limit on filing a claim begins when you discover the defect caused the injury.


There is no limit to the damages that can be awarded in this type of case. However, Pennsylvania uses the modified comparative fault standard, which means that if the jury in your court case finds you more than 50% responsible for your injury, then you will not receive any damages.

Hire a Lawyer If You Have Suffered Injuries as a result of a Defective Product

Issues arising from a defective product can cause minor or life-changing injuries or even death. If you have suffered an injury due to a defective product, you may be eligible for financial compensation to help cover the cost of your medical bills and lost income.

An experienced product liability lawyer can guide you through the complex laws regarding defective products and file a claim on your behalf. At Philly Injury Lawyer, we operate on a no-win, no fee basis. Contact us today at (215) 735-4800 to schedule a no-obligation consultation.

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