When we buy items, we often take note of the written words on the box and the papers that come with the product. While some of these written items are helpful for consumers, others seem like gibberish and not worth reading or keeping. What some consumers in Montana and other states might not know is that the words, phrases and statements on these documents are often important. Even more so, if a manufacturer fails to provide adequate and proper warnings for consumers, this is considered a defective warning.

What is a defective warning when it comes to a dangerous product? When it comes to warnings, a product that does not have any design flaws and was manufactured properly could still be considered a dangerous product. This occurs when there are inadequate instructions or warnings for consumers regarding the foreseeable risks of harm posed by the product.

Manufacturers have the duty to warn consumers. In fact, there are two duties related to creating labels and instructions. First, a manufacturer is required to warn consumers of any hidden dangers that may be present in a product. Second, a manufacturer must instruct consumers how to use a product so that they can avoid any dangers and use the product safely.

Warnings are required when a product presents a danger, when a manufacturer knows about a danger, when a danger is present when the product is reasonably used in its intended manner, and when a danger is not obvious to a reasonable consumer. When warnings are required, they must be clear, specific, and placed in a location where a consumer can easily see it.

When a consumer is harmed due to a defective warning, it is possible to hold a negligent manufacturer liable. An injured consumer could file a product liability claim to help them recover compensation for their injuries, damages and losses.

Source: FindLaw, “Defects in Warnings,” accessed Dec. 4, 2016