John B. Stewart, Attorney at Law
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Of the firm Murphy & Manitsas, LLP
Springfield, MA
Practice Areas
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Products Liability

Products Liability Claims

In Massachusetts claims are typically brought alleging negligence, breach of implied warranty (strict liability) and violation of the consumer protection act. Although comparative negligence is a defense to a negligence claim, an accident must be caused by a user's willful and knowing misuse of the product to constitute a defense to a warranty claim.

I have experience defending these claims and have obtained some good trial results. A few examples are:

In Roberge v. Roberge, a jury concluded a bicycle was not defective resulting in a defense verdict for a homeowner who supplied a bicycle to his 13 year old nephew. The boy claimed the brakes on the bicycle were defective and caused him to crash into a mailbox, sustaining a broken jaw. At trial the world's foremost expert on Columbia bicycles testified that he tested this bike and it met CPSC braking standards.

In Burgos v. Danly Machine, a federal court jury found a warning on a 50 ton press was insufficient, but that breach of warranty did not cause the plaintiff's injury, resulting in a defense verdict.

In Sweetbrook v. INA, a jury concluded the insurer sustained its burden of proving a policy exclusion of "inherent defect" as being the cause of a rupture in a large commercial water storage tank.

Here are some cases from my practice:

Download: burgos_v._danly_machine.pdf
Download: cramer_v._romani_opp_msj0001.pdf
Download: mahar_v._hanover_house_decision0002.pdf
Download: motion_to_compel_wc_file.pdf
Download: msj_product_liability.pdf
Download: ruel_v._scan-a-matic_msj0001.pdf
Download: witte_v._thermold_msj_decision.pdf

John B. Stewart, Attorney at Law, Of the firm Murphy & Manitsas, LLP
20 Maple Street, Suite 301, Springfield, MA 01103 • Ph (413) 206-9134 • Fax (413) 733-4403