Informative Articles

Learning the Basics: Product Protection and Safety Standards in Ontario

Learning the Basics: Product Protection and Safety Standards in Ontario

Household appliances, vehicles, pharmaceutical drugs, and children’s toys are just a few of the products that Canadians both purchase and utilize every day. With every product that is purchased, there is an expectation that both the manufacturers and sellers of a product have taken all the necessary steps to ensure that a product is safe. Unfortunately, this is not always the case.  

Product liability refers to the liability of any parties involved in the manufacture or sale of a product and the resulting damage or injury that this product has caused. Product liability law focuses on both defect and negligence. Defect is considered the physical state of the product and negligence refers to the manufacturer’s conduct pertaining to the product.  

There are three categories of product defects in which manufacturers may be held liable: 

  1. Manufacturing: Defects that arose in the production and manufacture of a product. 
  2. Flawed Design: Defects that arose from design flaws.  
  3. Inadequate Warnings: Issues that result from a lack of warning from the manufacturer about how to properly use a product.  

In regard to manufacturer’s liability as it pertains to unsafe products, the Supreme Court of Canada has declared that manufacturers have a duty to customers to ensure that a product has no defects that are likely to result in injury. Additionally, the Supreme Court of Canada stated that manufacturers must clearly and reasonably inform consumers of all of the potential dangers that come with using a product at both the time of sale, as well as dangers that may have been discovered after the product has been sold. 

Injuries or ill effects that may require medical treatment must be reported. This includes, but is not limited to: 

  • External physical harm 
  • Threats to breathing 
  • Allergic reactions 
  • Poisoning  
  • Internal injury 

In personal injury product liability claims, the individual making the claim must prove that they were harmed by the unsafe product. For more information on product protection and safety standards in Ontario, contact our team of experienced professionals!

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