Defective Products

A claim against a seller of a defective product may be based upon the principles of strict liability. Such a claim generally requires showing that the seller was engaged in the business of selling the product; that the product was defective; that the seller expected the product to reach consumers without any substantial changes; and that the defect caused the victim to suffer personal injury or property damage. A product may be defective due to a manufacturing defect, an absence of sufficient warnings or instructions, or an unsafe design.

A strict liability claim for a defective product generally must be brought within three years of the date on which the claim accrues.

For information about other civil claims recognized in the District of Columbia, click here. For information about how to use this guide, click here.

[Sources: Douglas C. Melcher, Tort Claims and Defenses in the District of Columbia § 15 (2014), and legal authorities cited therein.]