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An exploration of design and manufacturing defect differences

As product liability attorneys serving Tennessee residents, we know how confusing topics concerning design and manufacturing defects can be to injured victims. These victims have already received devastating injuries or lost a loved one because of a defective product. They need authoritative guidance and legal advice, not a bunch of mumbo-jumbo. We hope this blog post will help to define both design defects and manufacturing defects so that victims can have one less thing to think about.

Since the advent of the industrial age, people have been trying to figure out why seemingly well-designed and manufactured products suddenly become hazardous. Before the middle of the 20th century, most cases concerning product liability were basically classified as manufacturing defects. However, in the 1960s and 70s, the law began to recognize design defects as well.

A group with the University of California Irvine, specifically with the School of Information and Computer Sciences, has published a paper about how computer software can relate to product liability. Within this paper, we found reasonably clear definitions of manufacturing defects and design defects.

-- A manufacturing defect can occur when the product is made in a different way than the original design intended.

-- A design defect can occur when any "foreseeable risks of harm" within a product might have been avoided by altering or changing its design.

While the two may not seem that different from one another, the type of defect matters when a products liability claim is at stake. Knowing whether the product that caused you harm was due to a design or manufacturing defect helps you and your lawyer target the right entities in your attempts to find a legal remedy. Please explore our web pages to learn more about products liability and defective products.

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