Overview

Have you been harmed by a product?

  • a medical device that has gone wrong?
  • an unexpected side effect from your medication?
  • an aircraft or helicopter crash?
  • a faulty electrical appliance?
  • a beauty product that has caused an unexpected reaction?
  • were you warned sufficiently about the risks involved in the use of a device or a drug?
  • an unsafe consumer product such as a dryer, washing machine or fridge?

In the eyes of the law, if the product did not produce the level of safety you would have expected then it may be considered defective and you may be able to be compensated by the manufacturer for the injuries or losses that follow.

If you were sold a product that was not of satisfactory quality or fit for purpose and it injured you, then you may be entitled to bring a claim against the hospital or business that sold it to you.

Our harmful products experience

Our team has many years' experience of bringing successful harmful product claims.

Our expert advice has helped us to be ranked first as a representative of claimants in these types of cases by Chambers and Partners and the Legal 500, the independent guides to Law firms.

Compensation has been recovered for many victims of harmful products such as ordinary household products as well as medical and pharmaceutical devices.

Most recently the firm:

  • is pursuing further claims of defective intraocular lenses manufactured by Oculentis and supplied by Optical Express or by private hospitals;
  • represents victims of vaginal mesh implants against the manufacturers and the health authorities responsible for implanting the mesh;
  • is investigating injuries caused by NutriBullet blenders, retractable dog leads and other consumer products;
  • is investigating a defective knee implant;
  • representing claimants where PEEK, a medical compound was used in upper limb joint implants;
  • investigating failed heart assist and defibrillator devices;
  • investigating injuries caused by Essure contraception device and failed Gastric bands; and
  • investigating long-term damage caused by Gadolinium contrast agent.

In the past Hugh James has negotiated:

  • a settlement protocol for patients who alleged visual problems from their HOYA cataract remedial intraocular lenses;
  •  various confidential settlements arising out of failed hip and spinal devices; and
  • settlement of claims arising from aircraft and helicopter crashes and for victims of the South Wales E Coli outbreak.

Our personal injury lawyers

  • assist some of the 700,000 or so people who are injured each year and wish to seek compensation for their losses – and we can assist those who have been injured and who could claim but feel unable to;
  • investigate each potential claim thoroughly and offer early and ongoing assessments as to the prospects of success in your claim and the likely level of compensation and other remedies you may be entitled to;
  • help clients who have suffered relatively minor injuries and those who have had the misfortune to suffer catastrophic and life-changing injuries;
  • work to the highest service standards so that we conclude your case as quickly as possible with the right remedy; and
  • work on conditional fee agreements (no win, no fee) so that if we don’t win your case there is no bill to pay.

amongst us Deputy District Judges, Recorders, Queens Counsel, Solicitors Regulation Authority specialist panel members, Fellows of the Association of Personal Injury Lawyers (APIL), members of Action for the Victims of Medical Accidents, published authors of legal texts, frequent contributors of legal journal articles and some of the country’s most renowned trainers of other lawyers on all aspects of personal injury law.

Key contact

Mark Harvey is a Partner in the claimant division. He has obtained compensation for many individual victims of common but defective consumer products as well as victims of accidents overseas and arising out of travel generally.

Find advice

Your questions answered

What you need to prove
 

In order for your harmful product compensation claim to be successful you, as the claimant, will need to establish that the product was defective and that this caused you an injury that you would not have otherwise have suffered.

In other words, you will need to prove that the manufacturer or supplier was liable for the defect in the product and that this caused your injury. We can help you achieve this outcome.

Consumer Protection Act
 

The Consumer Protection Act 1987 (CPA) applies to any products supplied by manufacturers after the 1 March 1988 and it provides that where any damage is caused "wholly or partly by a defect in the product" the manufacturer and/or supplier will be liable for the damage caused which includes personal injury.  The Act imposes a strict liability on the manufacturer/supplier.

Under the CPA it must be proved that the product was defective; that is "the safety of the product was not such as persons generally are entitled to expect".

Once we have proved that the product was defective we will need to prove that the defect in the product caused the damage.  This can only be proved on the basis of medical evidence.

 

Common Law Negligence
 

Under the common law of negligence it must be established that there was a defect with the product and that there was a duty on the manufacturer to take reasonable care to ensure that it would not cause damage and there has been a breach of that duty by the manufacturer because it was reasonably foreseeable at the time that the product was supplied that injury was likely to occur.

Unlike a claim under the Consumer Protection Act where the onus is on the defendant to show that the defect could not have been identified at the time of supply, under the common law of negligence, the onus is on the claimant to prove that it was reasonably foreseeable to the defendant at the time of supply that the product was defective and would cause injury.  This claim is more difficult but may be necessary if the product complained if is more than ten years old.

The Limitation Act provides that the claim must be brought within three years of the date of knowledge that the product was defective and had caused a significant injury.

Quotes

Mark Harvey has a wide-ranging practice, which includes product liability, sports accident and travel claims, as well as abuse cases. Sources assert that he is "a really impressive litigator who puts together enormous cases and steers the whole thing."

Chambers and Partners UK

Quotes

Mark Harvey is a leading practitioner and is the object of praise with regard to his expertise in handling headline product liability claims. One source says: "He's really at the forefront of claimant class and group actions in terms of how to strategically run them. Very few people have as much experience as him."

Chambers and Partners UK

Quotes

Equally as capable when assisting individual clients as when providing robust support during complex group litigation.

Chambers and Partners UK

Quotes

The team at Hugh James undertakes work of the utmost complexity in this field. They have the strength-in-depth to be able to take on litigation of any size, from single claims to complex, multi-party medical product litigation'.

Legal 500

Quotes

Mark Harvey is a complete master in the field; he combines legal knowledge, sound tactical skills and good judgement'.

Legal 500

Quotes

Mark Harvey is excellent and the person you would want running your product case.

Legal 500

Quotes

Pauline Roberts is hardworking and very knowledgeable. She has superb client skills and the talent to find 'the something' that can make the difference in the mass of disclosure that often accompanies major litigation in this field'.

Legal 500

Quotes

The extremely experienced Mark Harvey garners praise from market sources for his "very good understanding of the claimant market." His practice demonstrates considerable prowess in the co-ordination of multiparty proceedings and large group actions, particularly those relating to defective medical devices. Another source describes him as "an excellent cross-border litigator."

Chambers & Partners UK

Quotes

Department co-head Mark Harvey offers a well-regarded personal injury practice, with particular expertise in product liability claims. One source says: "He has a very strong reputation in Cardiff for being a technically good and tough litigator."

Chambers & Partners UK

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