Product Liability in Virginia: Injury from use of a product.


Due to the current pandemic, people are finding themselves within their home much more than usual. This means that they are using appliances and items in their home that they may not have used that much beforehand. It is possible that you could find yourself injured due to one of these appliances or items that you are now constantly nearby.

If you find yourself injured due to something you own in or around your house you may have a product liability case. In Virginia product liability cases come in two varieties: negligence, typically from a defect in that specific product; or contract, typically from a breach of a warranty associated with that product.

While very different claims the negligence and contractual claims do have a number of things in common. The first of which is the product must have injured you or your property. The second is that both of them typically are very expensive cases as a variety of experts will be needed. Third is that both claims must stem from the product itself, and not due to any form of mishandling of it. Fourth is that you will need to keep the product in your possession so that it can be looked over by an expert witness to be able to state in their expert opinion what went wrong.

The negligence claim will be focused on your specific product. In order to prove negligence, we will need to establish that the failing in the device was due to a manufacturing error. Which also means we will need to show that the problem did not come about because of user error.

The contractual claim comes from either an implied warranty or an express warranty. If a product is stated to be able to last for one year but it stops working a week after purchase that would be a violation of an express warranty. If the product is supposed to be used for a specific purpose such as popping popcorn, but it is unable to pop popcorn that would be an example of a violation of an implied warranty. Both of those examples would not be worth pursuing as the most you could recover would be the cost of the item. That is why some injury to you or your property is required.

A product liability claim is not a claim to take lightly. For any product liability case, there are likely multiple possible defendants. Not all cases will include the same parties and who is and isn’t an appropriate defendant will be contingent on the facts of your case.

If you have been injured by a product in your home and you have questions regarding your ability to recover,  please do not hesitate to reach out to our attorneys at or 804-423-1382. We would like to help.