Product liability ethics in business

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Product liability ethics in business

A year and a half later, hoping to become pregnant, she removed the device only to find she had become infertile. Doctors blamed her sterility on pelvic inflammatory disease PIDa condition frequently associated with the use of IUDs.

Kociemba hired a lawyer and brought a product liability suit against G. Searle, stating that the company should be held liable for her infertility. The company countered that PID was also associated with certain sexual activities, activities in which Kociemba might have engaged.

In addition, corporate representatives said that the risks of IUDs were well known to her doctor. Therefore, the company asserted, she and her doctor should be held responsible for her injuries. Every year, 34 million people are injured or killed as a result of product related accidents.

Such injuries are the major cause of death for people between the ages of 1 and 36, outnumbering deaths from cancer or heart disease. Tens of thousands of product injury lawsuits are filed each year.

As the number of claims has risen, so too have the number of companies forced to file bankruptcy because of massive suits. Moreover, an increasing number of companies are claiming that they have pulled established products off the market and halted research on promising products for fear of liability.

Manufacturers claim that they are victims of a system gone haywire. According to strict liability laws, a manufacturer can be held liable for injuries even when he or she had no way of preventing those injuries.

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Holding manufacturers responsible for injuries caused by products known to be defective or potentially dangerous is one thing, but today manufacturers face lawsuits--often bordering on the outrageous--for injuries they could not have prevented.

Consumer activists, on the other hand, claim that the threat of product liability suits forces manufacturers to make product safety a priority and that those who suffer injuries caused by products should be compensated for their injuries by the manufacturers of those products.

Product injuries represent a major cost of introducing products into a society. Since virtually every new product carries some unknown risk, a possibility always exists that the product may cause injuries or impose other costs on users. This raises an important moral question: How should these costs be distributed among the members of our society?

Should Consumers Bear More Responsibility? Manufacturers contend that consumers should bear more responsibility for product injuries because the costs of placing full liability onto companies far outweigh the benefits.

Since the s, there has been a steady increase of product liability cases. According to one study, 13, product liability suits were filed in federal court incompared to only 1, in Due to this barrage of litigation, the cost of doing business has risen dramatically.

Corporate moral agency

Insurance premiums have skyrocketed, where insurance is available at all. Manufacturers' legal costs have also soared: The rising cost of product liability insurance and lawsuits has led, in turn, to great increases in consumer prices.

Product liability ethics in business

The economy also has suffered from the boom in product liability claims. When companies facing massive lawsuits have been forced to scale down their operations, the result is a loss of jobs. In addition, the threat of liability has affected American businesses' ability to compete internationally.

In other countries, there are severe limits on what manufacturers can be held responsible for and there is less tendency to sue. By not having to contend with a morass of lawsuits, these companies can offer cheaper products, and put American manufacturers at a competitive disadvantage.

Product liability ethics in business

It is also argued that the fear of being hit with a liability claim keeps many lifesaving drugs and devices off the market, and stifles creativity and innovation.Products liability refers to the liability of any or all parties along the chain of manufacture of any product for damage caused by that product.

Strict liability: makes those in the chain of distribution of a defective product liable for the damages caused by the defect. √óClose Visit Our New Risk Management Hub.

Professional liability can be tricky. We'll help navigate the turmoil with the most recent research, webinars, case studies, and sample documents to help protect your engineering business.

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Led to strict product liability way of thinking. Strict Product liability. Liability without fault. For example, the so-called "explosion" in product liability suits, "crippling American business," is a myth.

A recent study by the RAND Corporation found that although the number of product liability lawsuits had increased nearly eight-fold during the last decade, more that half of these lawsuits involved only a handful of companies, reflecting.

Types of Defective Product Liability Claims |

Business ethics (also known as corporate ethics) is a form of applied ethics or professional ethics, that examines ethical principles and moral or ethical problems that can arise in a business applies to all aspects of business conduct and is relevant to the conduct of individuals and entire organizations.

These ethics originate from individuals, organizational statements or. Product Liability I. Produc t liability No safety device Inadequate materials Defects in manufacture Inadequate instructions UNIVERSITY SCHOOL OF BUSINESS STUDIES. Typology of Injury Sources Inherent risk in product Design defects Dangerous condition 4/1/ II.

Product Liability and Ethics