6 Largest Products Liability Insurance Suits

By: Castle Rock Insurance Agency


When they do lawsuits ensue. When several people get involved in the lawsuit, class action lawsuits ensue which have the potential to be catastrophic, often costing manufacturers or their insurance companies millions or even billions of dollars.The following are major instances of Product Liability Claims, and they include recalls. Ironically recalls are often excluded from Product Liability Insurance Policies. Aside from severe cases, product Liability Suits can strike small jewelry designers, toy manufactures, clothing designers & manufacturers and to this day the thundering repercussions of paint manufacturing companies that used lead still echo through real estate owners looking for insurance. The following are the 6 of the largest Product Liability Suits, in order of smallest to largest by claim value adjusted for 2008 inflationary factors.

Number 6 Product Liability Suit
February 2002
Ford Motor Company Featuring Bridgestone Tires
Product Liability Suit - Faulty Tire Recall
Claim: Faulty Tires Causing Blow Outs, Roll Overs, Injury & Death by Having "Substantial Failure Risk"
Participants: 13.5 Million Vehicles
Individual Payment Range: $200 to $400
Claim Amount: Approx $1,100,000,000
Product Liability Cost adjusted for 2008: $1,285,400,000

Number 5 Product Liability Suit
December 1998
Owens Corning
Product Liability Suit - Asbestos Building Materials
Claim: Asbestos Building Materials Causing Mesothelioma, Cancer & Death
Participants: 176,000 Individuals
Product Liability Claim Amount: $1,200,000,000 - 1.2 Billion Dollars
Product Liability Cost Adjusted for 2008: $1,548,400,000

Number 4 Product Liability Suit
May 1995
Dow Chemical
Product Liability Suit - Silicone Breast Implants
Claim: Silicone Breast Implants Rupture Causing Injury, Bodily Damage, Scleroderma & Death
Participants: 400,000+ Women
Individual Payment Range: $105,000 to $1,400,000
Claim Amount: $4,250,000,000 - 4.25 Billion Dollars
Product Liability Cost adjusted for 2008: $5,863,000,000

Number 3 Product Liability Suit
August 1999
General Motors Corp
Product Liability Suit - Faulty Gas Tank on the 1979 Chevrolet Malibu
Claim: Faulty Gas Tank Caused Fatal Gas Tank Explosions
Product Liability Claim Amount: $4,900,000,000 - 4.9 Billion Dollars
Product Liability Cost adjusted for 2008: $6,183,000,000

Number 2 Product Liability Suit
March 2008
General Motors Corp (Again)
Product Liability Suit - Faulty Chemical Use - Recall
Claim: Dex-Cool Coolant Causing Leaks & Engine Damage
Participants: 35,000,000 GM Customers
Individual Payment Range: $400 to $800
Product Liability Claim Amount: approx $20,000,000,000 - 20 Billion Dollars
Product Liability Cost adjusted for 2008: $20,000,000,000

Number 1 Product Liability Suit
December 2002
Philip Morris
Product Liability Suit - Tobacco Products
Claim: Smoking Sickens & Kills People
Product Liability Claim Amount: $28,000,000,000 - 28 Billion Dollars.
Product Liability Cost adjusted for 2008: $32,720,000,000

What types of products need products liability insurance?
Essentially any product that is put into market or sold in any venue should have products liability insurance. Some examples are food, clothing, tools, energy products, furniture, stationary goods, beverages, baked products, luggage, pet items, heating & cooling apparatus, electronic goods, vehicles, toys (especially).

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Brett Lipton Castle Rock Agency
Products Liability Insurance 419 Lafayette Street NY NY 10003 212-360-2334

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