Defective Products & Consumer Goods

Product liability – Defective aerial lift design

Settlement of product liability lawsuit for the family of a young boy who was catastrophically injured when an aerial lift truck he was riding in tipped over due to a defect in its design. The young boy suffered severe brain damage that left him paralyzed and unable to speak or care for himself.

Defective consumer product – Child dies due to carbon monoxide poisoning

Settlement of wrongful death case on behalf of a family who lost a child as a result of carbon monoxide poisoning. SUGARMAN attorneys brought product liability and general negligence claims alleging improper installation of a residential boiler, and a defect in the boiler which allowed it to create and introduce high concentrations of carbon monoxide into the home during foreseeable weather events, such as heavy snow storms.

Defective product – Industrial machine

Personal injury settlement against automotive fabric company for a worker who suffered fractures to his arm when caught in an industrial winding machine due to improper training, staffing and supervision, and improper warnings on the machine.

Industrial plastic roll-stand

Settlement in product liability suit where the plaintiff suffered a workplace hand injury caused by roll-stand. The manufacturer of the machine had failed to properly guard a nip point with a barrier guard, light curtain, electric eye, trip wire, or presence-sensing device to prevent workers from coming into contact with nip rolls.

Pool slide fatality

SUGARMAN lawyers secured $20.6 million in punitive and compensatory damages for a Colorado man whose wife was critically injured from a defective pool slide sold online and in stores by Toys R Us. The slide was imported from China and did not comply with federal standards regulating swimming pool slides. The jury award was the largest wrongful death/personal injury verdict in Massachusetts in 2011.

Defective elevating scissor lift

Settlement in product liability suit for construction worker who sustained severe crush injuries due to the defective design of a safety device in an elevating scissor lift that allowed the lift to rise due to inadvertent contact with the joystick – the very hazard the safety device was intended to prevent.

Downs v. Gulf & Western Mfg. Co., 677 F. Supp. 661 (D. Mass. 1987)

A new trial was granted, allowing SUGARMAN lawyers to present the plaintiff’s claims of negligence and breach of implied warranty of merchantability against the defendant.

Haidak v. Collagen Corp., 67 F. Supp.2d 21 (D. Mass. 1999)

Product liability claim as a result of bovine collagen injections were not pre-empted by Federal pre-market approval process and resulted in injuries.

Hooper v. Davis-Standard Corp, et al., 482 F. Supp 2d 157 (2007)

After SUGARMAN lawyers successfully resolved a product liability action in favor of a machine worker injured by a defective industrial machine (recovering a substantial settlement from the machine manufacturer), the worker’s employer tried to bring an action against the same manufacturer for its business loss. The machine manufacturer successfully defeated the claims of the employer.

Mark v. Obear & Sons, Inc., 313 F. Supp. 373 (D. Mass. 1970)

Under the long-arm statute, the court had jurisdiction over the defendant, a California corporation, which manufactured and sold its products in Massachusetts, where the plaintiff resided. The decision allowed SUGARMAN lawyers to bring a claim in Massachusetts on behalf of our client.

Sabel v. Meade Johnson & Co., 737 F.Supp. 135 (D. Mass. 1990)

The United States District Court decided in favor of injured patient who suffered severe complications from a drug manufactured by defendant drug company and allowed evidence at trial of post-injury warnings ordered by FDA. The case settled before the jury began deliberations.

Defective product – Industrial plastic roll-stand

Settlement in product liability suit where the plaintiff suffered a workplace hand injury caused by roll-stand. The manufacturer of the machine had failed to properly guard a nip point with a barrier guard, light curtain, electric eye, trip wire, or presence-sensing device to prevent workers from coming into contact with nip rolls.

Defective aerial lift control design

Settlement reached for an electrical apprentice working on the Big Dig. The worker suffered an abdominal crush injury and an esophageal tear because of a malfunction with the bucket controls.

Failure to maintain equipment – Power plant accident causes worker’s injuries

Settlement against power plant and safety contractor for twenty-six-year-old boilermaker apprentice who was severely injured when he was violently sucked into a boiler drum which had not been properly de-energized for contractor work during an annual shutdown.

Griffin v. General Motors Corp., 380 Mass. 362 (1980)

Jury verdict against General Motors affirmed on appeal, in a case where an improperly designed car allowed fumes from the engine to enter the passenger compartment, explode, and severely burn the driver.

Diaz v. Eli Lilly & Co., 364 Mass. 153 (1973) and 14 Mass. App. Ct. 448 (1982)

In this landmark product liability/pharmaceutical case, the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court agreed with the arguments advanced by SUGARMAN attorneys and decided, for the first time, that a husband or wife has a claim for damages (loss of consortium) when their spouse is injured by negligence or wrongdoing.

doCanto v. Ametek, Inc., 367 Mass. 776 (1975)

The Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court upheld a jury verdict to a SUGARMAN client for injuries caused by a defectively designed laundry machine. The case established precedent allowing into evidence safety changes made after the manufacture of the defective machine.

Knox vs. Schechtl Maschinenbau GmbH, et. al. 1:17-cv-11144-GAO (2019)

The First Circuit Court of Appeals reversed the U.S. District Court’s decision to dismiss product liability claims against a foreign manufacturer for lack of personal jurisdiction in Massachusetts. The First Circuit agreed with SUGARMAN’s attorneys that the individual fulfillment of each order, the language in the manufacturer manual inviting direct contact from consumers and the significant stream of sales into Massachusetts over a fifteen-year period were enough to establish personal jurisdiction under existing Supreme Court precedent. The case was remanded back to U.S. District Court in Boston for further proceedings.

Carey v. General Motors Corp., 37 Mass. 736 (1979)

Following an automobile accident, the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court rejected General Motors’ appeal from a jury verdict that awarded damages to the two occupants injured by the faulty design of the car in which they were riding. SUGARMAN lawyers successfully argued that there were three defects in the car, each of which would be sufficient to cause the crash on its own.

Nna, et al. v. American Standard, Inc., 630 F. Supp. 2d 115 (2009)

In an action brought by the widow and injured co-workers of a Massachusetts transportation company employee for a defectively designed warning device (train horn), SUGARMAN attorneys reached a settlement after the Court rejected the horn manufacturer’s claim that the horn was not defective and did not play a role in causing the accident.

Maillet v. ATF-Davidson Co., 407 Mass. 185 (1990)

A jury verdict found for a worker whose hand was injured in a press in a product liability/defective product lawsuit. Upheld on appeal, the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court found that the negligence and breach of warranty by a product manufacturer was a violation of the Massachusetts Consumer Protection Statute (G. L. 93A, §9(4)).

Child dies due to carbon monoxide poisoning

Settlement on behalf of a family who lost a child as a result of carbon monoxide poisoning. SUGARMAN attorneys brought product liability and general negligence claims alleging improper installation of a residential boiler, and a defect in the boiler which allowed it to create and introduce high concentrations of carbon monoxide into the home during foreseeable weather events, such as heavy snow storms.

Defective product – Airplane cargo loader

Settlement in product liability lawsuit for a Boston airline worker who sustained fractures of his pelvis and hip when the safety rails on a cargo loader failed to activate, allowing a 1,500 lb. pallet to move off the loader and land on the worker after the pallet fell approximately 15 feet. The accident occurred due to a manufacturing defect in an electronic sensor used to activate the safety rails whenever the loader was in operation.

Defective scissor lift injures construction worker

Settlement in product liability suit for construction worker who sustained severe crush and cardiovascular injuries due to the defective design of a safety device in an elevating scissor lift that allowed the lift to rise due to inadvertent contact with the joystick – the very hazard the safety device was intended to prevent.

Aleo v. Toys R Us, Inc., 466 Mass. 398 (2013)

The Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court upheld a jury verdict of $20.6 million, including the jury’s award of punitive damages, in this landmark wrongful death case arising out of the defective design and manufacture of an inflatable pool slide.