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Law Offices of Jonathan M. Cooper

New York Noncompete, Trade Secret & School Negligence Blog

This blog by the six-time published author Jonathan Cooper, is intended to educate the general public about issues of interest, particularly innovations and changes in the law, in the areas of non-compete agreements, breach of contract matters, school negligence (and/or negligent supervision), construction accidentsslip and/or trip and fall accidentsauto accidents, and, of course, defective or dangerous products

For additional information on any of these topics, readers are encouraged to download these FREE e-books:

 


6/30/2010
Jonathan Cooper
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When Companies (Dell) Resort to Absurdities to Conceal Defective Product Design

Long Island, New York defective design and product lawyer Jonathan Cooper discusses how the attorneys prosecuting the defective design claims against Dell computer revealed the sordid details of the computers' failures, and how this provides a textbook example of how to prove a defective design claim under New York law. For additional information on how to prove a defective design claim under New York law, please see https://www.jonathancooperlaw.com/library/how-to-prove-that-a-product-was-defectively-designed-under-ny-law.cfm, or contact Jonathan Cooper directly at 516-791-5700.

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4/22/2010
Jonathan Cooper
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NY Jury Finds Exercise Chair Lacked Adequate Warning, But Dismisses Case Anyway

In this post, Long Island, New York defective consumer product lawyer Jonathan Cooper discusses how in some cases, a jury can find that a product was defective, but the plaintiffs will still lose their defective products lawsuit. For additional information on this topic, please download a copy of Jonathan Cooper's Free book, "Why There Are So Few Successful Defective Products Lawsuits" from www.ProductsLiabilityBook.com.

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4/15/2010
Jonathan Cooper
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NY Jury Finds Clothing Retailer Negligent, But Not Liable, For Plaintiff's Burns

In this article, Long Island, NY products liability lawyer Jonathan Cooper discusses how in one recent case, a NY jury held that the defendant was negligent - but not liable - for failing to test properly the product that they sold. For additional, general information on product liability cases under New York law, please visit www.ProductsLiabilityBook.com.

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3/3/2010
Jonathan Cooper
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Shocker: Toyota's "Fixes" Of Gas Pedal Defect Apparently Don't Work

In this blog post, Long Island, New York Toyota recall and products liability attorney and author of "Why There Are So Few Successful Defective Products Lawsuits" Jonathan Cooper discusses how, by attempting to conceal the problems with their cars (which they apparently still have not fixed), Toyota has certainly earned the public's distrust. For additional information on product recalls and how they affect defective products lawsuits generally, you can download a Free copy of Jonathan Cooper's eBook on defective products lawsuits under New York law at www.ProductsLiabilityBook.com, or contact him directly at his Long Island, New York office at 516.791.5700.

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2/25/2010
Jonathan Cooper
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Preemption: Why Some Failure to Warn Claims in NY Are Barred By Federal Law

In this article, Long Island, New York defective products lawyer Jonathan Cooper discusses how the doctrine of Federal Preemption effectively bars some failure to warn claims. For additional Free information on defective products lawsuits generally, and how they operate under New York law, please visit www.ProductsLiabilityBook.com, or contact Mr. Cooper directly at his Long Island office at 516.791.5700.

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2/7/2010
Jonathan Cooper
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Toyota either has, or is about to learn, that the problem with going to desperate measures to conceal design defects with your product lines is that you can go too far, and then get caught in your own web of lies. As noted in a New York Times editorial that was published this past Friday, Toyota's claim that the federal safety agency had found no defects with their cars where the floor mat was compatible with the vehicle and properly secured was patently false.

Now, Toyota has essentially been forced to issue a product recall of over 4 million vehicles, roughly 3 times the number of vehicles it sold in North America in the past year. And, looking forward, I imagine this is only a small part of Toyota's problem, because I don't see how anyone in their right mind would trust a representation from either Toyota or the government (which, in fact, did look the other way on some of these problems until they mushroomed) that these defective designs, whether with regard to the sudden acceleration, the "sticky" gas pedals, or problematic driver-side mats had been remedied, and the cars were once again safe to be driven.

Stated differently, how can Toyota convince anyone to buy one of their products?



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12/24/2009
Jonathan Cooper
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CPSC Launches New Product Registration Initiative - But They Can - And Should - Do Better

In this article, Long Island, New York children's safety and defective products attorney Jonathan Cooper discusses how the CPSC's newest initiative to improve product registrations is welcome, but falls short of the mark in enhancing the defective product recall process. For additional information on these topics, please download Jonathan Cooper's Free eBook entitled "Why Are There So Few Successful Defective Products Lawsuits?" from www.ProductLiabilityBook.com.

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8/13/2009
Jonathan Cooper
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Earlier today, the U.S. Consumer Products Safety Commission issued a press release reminding everyone in the chain of distribution of children's products, from manufacturers and distributors to resellers and retailers that many of the provisions of the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act become effective tomorrow.

Interestingly, one of the provisions of the Act that has received the least attention (most of the Act is focused on the lead level in children's toys) may have the most promise in terms of its likelihood to improve product safety: new labeling requirements.

Under the Act, manufacturers are now required (unless manifestly impractical) to put permanent tracking labels on any consumer product that is targeted for use by children aged 12 and younger. These tracking labels must identify the name of the manufacturer and its location, the date the product was manufactured, and must specify information from the manufacturing process itself, including the lot or batch number.

The immediate and practical benefits to this provision are twofold:

  1. At the first hint that a product may be defectively designed, and a recall may be needed, it will be far easier to identify which specific products need to be recalled, and concurrently, to track where the recalled products were sold. As a natural consequence, it should make product recall efforts far simpler and more effective.
  2. It will help claimants who have been injured by a defective product to identify with greater specificity the potentially responsible parties, and thereby reduce the litigation costs borne by parties with no real connection to the products at issue.


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8/6/2009
Jonathan Cooper
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Earlier today, in conjunction with the launch of its campaign to prevent re-sellers of consumer products from introducing into the stream of commerce various products that were the subject of safety recalls (an earlier study concluded that almost 75% of re-sellers failed to comply with the Federal law prohibiting the re-sale of recalled consumer products) the U.S. Consumer Products Safety Commission released its Top Ten List of Recalled Children's Products.

Interestingly, this announcement does not clarify why these particular products made the "Top Ten" list. While some may be inclined to think that this is a cheap marketing gimmick, or a vain attempt at humor (ala David Letterman), my reading of the description of incidents that led to the recall of these dangerous products convinces me that this is not the case. The distinguishing characteristic of these products? Unlike many other consumer safety recalls, the design defects in these particular products (mostly defective cribs) led to several wrongful deaths.

That said, I am still troubled by a few aspects of the CPSC's press release. One, if the stated goal of the Top Ten List is to garner and focus the public's attention on the unique dangers presented by these particular children's products, then they should say so. And rather than just issue a simple press release, they should broadcast this list all over the news, and post videos on the internet that demonstrate the manifest dangers of these products. Second, if the government went to the trouble of conducting a study roughly ten years ago which assessed whether re-sellers of consumer products were compliant with Federal law barring the re-sale of recalled products, why wasn't a companion study done to assess what measures could be implemented to improve compliance. Wouldn't that have been more important than the first study?

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7/28/2009
Jonathan Cooper
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De-Bunking Some Myths About Defective Products Lawsuits Under NY Law

In this article, Long Island, New York products liability lawyer and author of the guide to New York defective products cases, Jonathan Cooper, explains why some commonly held ideas about the viability and prevalence of products liability lawsuits are terribly mistaken. For additional information on this topic, please visit www.ProductsLiabilityBook.com or www.JonathanCooperLaw.com.

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7/24/2009
Jonathan Cooper
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As reported in our news section, earlier this week, the U.S. Consumer Products Safety Commission, in a joint announcement with its sister organization, Health Canada, announced that nearly 90,000 gas grills were recalled after they had collectively received a whopping 161 reports of fires, burn injuries, and other assorted personal injuries, including loss of hearing, due to the defective design of these Chinese-made grills. And these complaints were all logged in less than 3 years.

Apparently, the fire hazard with this particular product, the Blue Ember Gas Grill, is that the gas tank's hose is set too close to the firebox.

In analyzing this news story, two questions immediately come to mind - and its not the first time we've raised these issues (see "CPSC's Recall of (Yet Another) Defective Crib Raises Questions About Recall System in General"):

  1. Why did it take so many reports of grill fires before this latest round of the recall became effective?; and,
  2. Why didn't the first round of recalls of this product in 2008 solve this problem?

The fact that these questions need to be asked is certainly troubling.

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7/6/2009
Jonathan Cooper
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On July 2, the Consumer Products Safety Commission, in conjunction with Aqua-Leisure Industries, recalled over 4 million children's inflatable boats and rafts, after they received over 30 complaints that the straps which secure the children's legs had a tendency to rip, causing the children to fall into the water. Although, thankfully, no drowning incidents have been reported due to this problem, it bears repeating that in terms of New York law governing defective products (or "products liability"), this is a classic example of a design defect. For additional information on what factors determine what a plaintiff must prove to succeed on a defective products claim, you can download the free eBook, "Why There Are So Few Successful Defective Products Lawsuits."

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