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Cannabis Product Liability

On Behalf of | Oct 6, 2017 | Product Liability

Countless marijuana businesses could face lawsuits in the coming years, except they implement correct labeling and standards. Some business owners believe that as long as they comply with state regulations, they should not fear civil liability. But nothing could be farther from the truth. In civil courts, you can’t use food and medication approved by the FDA as a defense. State regulations can only serve to determine whether or not a product should be on the shelves or if the company can keep its license to sell medical marijuana.

Business owners generally understand liability caused by negligence. In other words, if a product caused damage to someone, the manufacturer may be liable for all injuries or losses. The business’s insurance should cover these liability cases, which include trip and fall accidents as well as business vehicle accidents.  

But product liability cases can be complex. When a business owner finds out a customer came in contact with a product sold and he or she was not warned about the risks, the company that sold the product is held liable. These companies should acknowledge when someone is injured by one of their products. There are laws that protect customers from such errors.

When a product injures someone, the client generally files a claim against the grower, manufacturer, or anyone in the chain of distribution. A California product liability lawyer can determine which parties are held accountable.

Standard of Care

A strict liability standard is used when reviewing product liability claims. In other words, the person filing the complaint needs to prove the defective product caused harm.  Marijuana businesses have two types of exposures:

  • The first type of exposure includes cases related to food handling, food poisoning, and product defects, which are generally covered by insurance policies.
  • The second category of exposure is more serious since it includes medical marijuana as an intoxicating substance. Whether there was a design defect, false advertising language, or incorrect warnings, a qualified California product liability attorney should handle these cases.

It is possible that marijuana businesses may obtain insurance for all these losses as the industry keeps growing. The most serious cases often involve false promises about the product and failing to give warnings.

Breach of Warranty

Marijuana can have unpleasant side effects on some people, which may lead to dangerous behavior. Some companies are currently facing serious lawsuits for not labeling their products right. A possible defense is an employee stating that he or she didn’t think a small dose would harm anyone. However, if the attorney can prove the dose per bite was too high and there was false advertising, the manufacturers or any entity in the chain of distribution will be held liable.

Contact a Product Liability Attorney

If you believe you have a product liability case, contact our experienced attorneys.  A consumer, who ingests or uses a dangerous product and becomes ill, can sue for negligence. Contact us today and schedule your initial case evaluation.