Thursday, May 13, 2010
1 – Strict Liability in Tort (Strict Liability for Defective Products - Introduction)
1 – Strict Liability in Torts (Strict Liability for Defective Products - Introduction)
PLEASE NOTE THAT THE FOLLOWING IS TAKEN FROM SOME OF MY CLASS NOTES, SOME OF WHICH IS MY OWN PERSONAL WORK AND SOME OF WHICH BELONGS TO CONCORD LAW SCHOOL. IT IS POSTED TO HELP MY IL STUDENTS IN PARTICULAR. IT CANNOT BE DISSEMINATED WITHOUT EXPRESS, WRITTEN PERMISSION.
Finally, we leave Negligence and move into Strict Liability. Strict liability (S/L) primarily relates to three categories of situations: wild animals, abnormally-dangerous activities, and strict liability for defective products. That is somewhat simplified, but for first-year students, it will suffice. I’ll leave you to read about wild animals on your own. It is not a highly-tested area, but still, don’t ignore it. Regarding abnormally dangerous activities, I’ll leave you on your own here, as well, but tell you that almost always, on exams, this area pertains to dynamiting/blasting, but it can show up elsewhere. If I have time, I can go back to that later. So, here we will talk exclusively about Strict Liability for Defective Products or Strict Product’s Liability. Never simply refer to it as just Strict Liability or Product’s Liability without an explanation.
At the onset, it is most critical, that you understand that there are three causes of action in this area: Strict Liability, Negligence, and Implied Warranty. On a law essay, you are expected to talk about all three. We’ll get to Warranty in a later post. For negligence in the design, manufacture, distribution or sale of a defective product, you simply go through the negligence analysis that we have talked about in the Negligence posts: Duty, Standard of Care, Breach of Duty, Causation, Defenses and Damages.
Let’s leave it there for now. The next post in torts will be the beginning for the substance of Strict Liability for Defective Products.
Professor Doug Holden
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