Product Liability

McGuireWoods has built a reputation for defending manufacturers of a broad range of products — in an equally wide range of litigation. We serve as regional and national trial counsel; defend and try high-exposure product injury cases in plaintiff-friendly jurisdictions; coordinate the defense of pattern litigation, multidistrict mass tort litigation and consumer fraud class actions, and oversee product recalls and Consumer Products Safety Commission (CPSC) investigations.

Our trial lawyers have worked on behalf of product manufacturers in many of the nation’s most difficult jurisdictions, including those identified by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce as “judicial hellholes.” Although we are prepared to defend clients before juries and on appeal in federal and state courts across the country, we also work closely with clients to develop strategies to reduce or avoid litigation. In this regard, we regularly provide counsel on risk management, product literature and labeling, product recalls, document retention and control, and other procedures that can reduce exposure to product liability risks.

In order to provide the most effective defense possible, we invest significant time and resources in developing a full understanding of the design, manufacture and use of the products we are asked to defend. This approach has helped us achieve positive results for manufacturers in a number of industries. For example, we have significant experience in the defense of product manufacturers against personal and property damage claims arising from fires and explosions occurring in residential, commercial and industrial structures. Our clients include manufacturers of home safety equipment, valves, sensors, and controls used in home and commercial heating and cooking appliances, and in industrial applications.

The automotive industry is a frequent target of product liability litigation. We regularly defend automotive manufacturers in cases involving a range of plaintiff strategies, including sophisticated defect theories. Our automotive products liability team handles cases involving passenger cars, light trucks, sport utility vehicles, vans and motorcycles. We are national trial counsel to a leading U.S. automobile manufacturer, and have tried cases to favorable verdicts in numerous states.

We also have extensive experience defending some of the world’s leading power tool manufacturers, including serving as national trial counsel for more than 30 years to a large international outdoor power tool manufacturer. We have defended claims of personal injury or property damage allegedly resulting from the use of power tools in all 50 states, in dozens of trades and industries, and originating from many different circumstances — from fire and explosion; reactive and dynamic force; and exposure to benzene, silica, carbon monoxide, heavy metals, asbestos or other toxins. We also represent clients in claims arising from simple operator error and misuse of the tools or equipment.

In addition to our extensive trial record, McGuireWoods has broad experience representing clients on every aspect of insurance coverage and recoveries, from advice on appropriate coverage and risk management strategies to assistance with claims processing and negotiation, and arbitration and litigation of coverage matters. We have developed particular strength in the areas of “batch,” aggregate stop-loss orders, and other high-excess policies that cover a company’s aggregated product liability losses.
Product Liability

CONTACTS

J. Tracy Walker IV Partner T: +1 804 775 1131
Samuel L. Tarry Jr. Partner T: +1 804 775 7873
Results 1-20 of 24
Show All
Representative Matter

New York Court of Appeals upholds disposal of $11 million jury verdict

In re New York city Asbestos Litigation, 48 N.Y.S.3d 365 (N.Y. 1st App. Div. 2017). McGuireWoods secured entry of judgment notwithstanding the verdict, persuading the trial court to throw out an $11 million verdict against Ford in an asbestos mesothelioma case. In a 3-1 decision, the New York Appellate Division affirmed, holding that that the testimony of the plaintiffs’ expert witnesses on causation failed to meet the admissibility requirements for cases involving alleged exposure to toxic substances. This closely watched case involved the first application of New York’s heightened admissibility standards in an asbestos case.
Representative Matter

Supreme Court of Virginia reverses and renders final judgment where plaintiffs’ liability expert lacked sufficient foundation for his opinion

Hyundai Motor Company, Ltd., et al., v. Keith Allen Duncan, Individually and as Guardian and Conservator for Zachary Gage Duncan, et al., Record No. 140216. On January 8, 2015, the Supreme Court of Virginia reversed a $14.14 million jury verdict against Hyundai and entered final judgment in favor of Hyundai.  The court held that the plaintiffs’ expert testimony, which was the sole support for plaintiffs’ liability theory, should not have been admitted by the trial court because it was merely the expert’s “ipse dixit assumption” and was without any evidentiary support or empirical analysis.
Representative Matter

Building owner

Obtained a full defense verdict in favor of firm client after a two-week jury trial involving subrogation claims of $6.1 million in North Carolina Eastern District Court, Vance County, N.C.
Representative Matter

National rental car company

Representation of a national rental car company in a strict products liability and negligence action by consumer alleging that the crash was caused by defective and/or poorly installed tires on rental vehicle. The court granted summary judgment for the firm’s client, finding that plaintiff failed to submit any evidence creating a disputed issue of fact as to the existence of a defect.
Representative Matter

Leading global provider of components, systems and services

Representation of leading global provider of components, systems and services used in heating, air conditioning, commercial cooking/refrigeration, and residential thermostat products in a lawsuit for personal injuries and property damage arising from a gas explosion.
Representative Matter

Successful resolution of highly publicized food recalls

Nationwide defense of a North American packaged food company against highly publicized food recalls involving more than 600 cases in 30 plus states filed between 2007 and 2009. After consolidating nearly 20,000 individual claims into an MDL, we prevailed on plaintiffs' motion to certify both a personal injury and an economic injury class. Next, we oversaw two trials that resulted in defense verdicts (one of which we tried), obtained summary judgment in hundreds of other claims, won dismissals of an additional several hundred claims and prevailed on every appeal to the 11th Circuit. Building upon this these successes, our client was able to resolve the remainder of claims on satisfactory terms.
Representative Matter

Leading global provider of components, systems and services used in heating, air conditioning, commercial cooking/refrigeration, and residential thermostat products

Successfully defended appeal of motion for summary judgment in a wrongful death case in New York.
Representative Matter

Multinational automaker

Defense of a multinational automaker at trial in a case alleging a defective "splash shield" over the exhaust manifold, resulting in a post-collision fire.
Representative Matter

Multinational automaker

Defense at trial of a multinational automaker in wrongful death case tried in Bamberg County, South Carolina.
Representative Matter

Multinational automaker

Defended multinational automaker at trial in wrongful death action involving an allegedly defective door latch system. Plaintiff nonsuited on the second day of trial following voir dire of plaintiff’s lead liability expert witness.
Representative Matter

Multinational automaker

Defense of a multinational automaker at trial in wrongful death action in which plaintiff alleged a defectively designed airbag sensor system resulted in an improper deployment of the driver airbag.  A defense verdict was returned.
Representative Matter

Multinational automaker

Defense of multinational automaker at trial where plaintiff claimed that a defective fuel system caused a post-collision fire which caused severe injury to one plaintiff and the death of the other. Following a two week trial, the jury deliberated just under three hours and returned a unanimous verdict in favor of our client.  (Confirmed on appeal; however, we did not participate in appeal.)
Representative Matter

Leading generic and specialty pharmaceutical company

After a three week jury trial, obtained a unanimous defense verdict for one of the world's leading generic and specialty pharmaceutical companies.
Representative Matter

Automobile manufacturer

Defense at trial of an automobile manufacturer in a wrongful death case tried in the Southern District of New York. Driver was ejected in a multiple rollover collision. Plaintiff contended that the car’s door latching and restraint systems were defective, allowing the door to open in the crash. After a two-week trial, the jury returned a verdict for our client, finding there was no defect.
Representative Matter

Multinational automaker

Defense at trial of a multinational automaker in a wrongful death case tried in Louisville, Ky. Plaintiff was seated in the front passenger seat, unbelted. She was ejected and crushed between the vehicle and a concrete barrier. Plaintiff contended the car’s door lock and latching systems were defective, allowing the door to open in the crash. After a two-week trial, the jury deliberated for just 45 minutes before returning a verdict for our client, finding there was no defect.
Representative Matter

Leading global provider of components, systems and services used in heating, air conditioning, commercial cooking/refrigeration, and residential thermostat products

Defense of leading global provider of components, systems and services used in heating, air conditioning, commercial cooking/refrigeration, and residential thermostat products in state court in Wisconsin arising from the catastrophic explosion of a vacation cabin resulting in a death and severe injuries.
Representative Matter

Leading global provider of components, systems and services used in heating, air conditioning, commercial cooking/refrigeration, and residential thermostat products

Defense of leading global provider of components, systems and services used in heating, air conditioning, commercial cooking/refrigeration, and residential thermostat products in state court in New Jersey in combined cases arising from the catastrophic explosion of an acetylene manufacturing plant resulting in multiple deaths. After two years of litigation, our client was dismissed by all parties.
Representative Matter

Automobile manufacturer

Defense at trial of an automobile manufacturer in a wrongful death case tried in Jackson County, Mo. Plaintiff was rendered a paraplegic in a rollover accident. Plaintiff’s counsel alleged handling and stability defects, and roof strength defects. This was a high profile case, and the resulting defense verdict was publicized throughout the United States.
Representative Matter

Automobile manufacturer

National trial counsel for an automobile manufacturer for automotive product liability litigation.
Representative Matter

Large generic drug company

Representing large generic drug company in multi-jurisdictional product liability litigation involving its fentanyl transdermal system.
Results 1-20 of 24
Results 1-25 of 49
Show All
Kenneth W Abrams Kenneth W. Abrams
Associate
Gateway Plaza
800 East Canal Street
Richmond, VA 23219-3916

T: +1 804 775 4771
F: +1 757 640 3950
vCard
Emily Adams Emily M. Adams
Associate
Promenade
1230 Peachtree Street, N.E.
Suite 2100
Atlanta, GA 30309-3534

T: +1 404 443 5552
F: +1 404 443 5752
vCard
Ali Syed Syed D. Ali
Counsel
Tower Two-Sixty
260 Forbes Avenue
Suite 1800
Pittsburgh, PA 15222-3142

T: +1 412 667 6030
F: +1 412 402 4190
vCard
Candace Ali Blydenburgh Candace Ali Blydenburgh
Partner
Gateway Plaza
800 East Canal Street
Richmond, VA 23219-3916

T: +1 804 775 4772
F: +1 804 698 2034
vCard
Brady_Michael Michael H. Brady
Counsel
Gateway Plaza
800 East Canal Street
Richmond, VA 23219-3916

T: +1 804 775 4327
F: +1 804 698 2302
vCard
Bryan C Brantley Bryan C. Brantley
Partner
Tower Two-Sixty
260 Forbes Avenue
Suite 1800
Pittsburgh, PA 15222-3142

T: +1 412 667 7983
F: +1 412 667 7971
vCard
Stephen D Busch Stephen D. Busch
Partner
Gateway Plaza
800 East Canal Street
Richmond, VA 23219-3916

T: +1 804 775 4378
F: +1 804 698 2024
vCard
Michael R Daglio Michael R. Daglio
Partner
Gateway Plaza
800 East Canal Street
Richmond, VA 23219-3916

T: +1 804 775 1185
F: +1 804 698 2250
vCard
Valyce Davis Valyce M. Davis
Associate
434 Fayetteville Street
Suite 2600
Raleigh, NC 27601

T: +1 919 755 6571
F: +1 919 755 6593
vCard
Joan S Dinsmore Joan S. Dinsmore
Partner
434 Fayetteville Street
Suite 2600
Raleigh, NC 27601

T: +1 919 755 6693
F: +1 919 755 6592
vCard
Douglas W Ey Jr. Douglas W. Ey Jr.
Partner
201 North Tryon Street
Suite 3000
Charlotte, NC 28202-2146

T: +1 704 343 2076
F: +1 704 444 8727
vCard
Andrew Gann Andrew F. Gann Jr.
Associate
Gateway Plaza
800 East Canal Street
Richmond, VA 23219-3916

T: +1 804 775 1643
F: +1 804 698 2143
vCard
Akiesha Gilcrist Akiesha R. Gilcrist
Associate
Tower Two-Sixty
260 Forbes Avenue
Suite 1800
Pittsburgh, PA 15222-3142

T: +1 412 667 7938
F: +1 412 667 7942
vCard
Travis Gunn Travis C. Gunn
Associate
Gateway Plaza
800 East Canal Street
Richmond, VA 23219-3916

T: +1 804 775 7622
F: +1 804 698 2039
vCard
Steven D Hamilton Steven D. Hamilton
Partner
77 West Wacker Drive
Suite 4100
Chicago, IL 60601-1818

T: +1 312 849 8232
F: +1 312 698 4526
vCard
Jonathan P Harmon Jonathan P. Harmon
Partner
Gateway Plaza
800 East Canal Street
Richmond, VA 23219-3916

2001 K Street N.W.
Suite 400
Washington, DC 20006-1040

T: +1 804 775 4712
F: +1 804 698 2073
vCard
John Henderson John R. Henderson
Partner
2000 McKinney Avenue
Suite 1400
Dallas, TX 75201

T: +1 469 372 3927
F: +1 214 273 7472
vCard
Christian E Henneke Christian E. Henneke
Senior Counsel
Gateway Plaza
800 East Canal Street
Richmond, VA 23219-3916

T: +1 804 775 1050
F: +1 804 698 2136
vCard
Richard Holzheimer Richard Dean Holzheimer Jr.
Partner
1750 Tysons Boulevard
Suite 1800
Tysons, VA 22102-4215

T: +1 703 712 5087
F: +1 703 712 5254
vCard
Justin D Howard Justin D. Howard
Partner
434 Fayetteville Street
Suite 2600
Raleigh, NC 27601

T: +1 919 755 6685
F: +1 919 755 6586
vCard
Brett Huston Brett L. Huston
Counsel
Tower Two-Sixty
260 Forbes Avenue
Suite 1800
Pittsburgh, PA 15222-3142

T: +1 412 667 6049
F: +1 412 402 4189
vCard
Wen Hutchinson William O. L. Hutchinson
Partner
201 North Tryon Street
Suite 3000
Charlotte, NC 28202-2146

T: +1 704 343 2008
F: +1 704 353 6219
vCard
Mohammad Imaad Mohammad S. Imaad
Associate
Court Square Building
310 Fourth Street, N.E.
Suite 300
Charlottesville, VA 22902-1288

T: +1 434 977 2575
F: +1 434 980 2257
vCard
J. Brian Jackson J. Brian Jackson
Partner
Court Square Building
310 Fourth Street, N.E.
Suite 300
Charlottesville, VA 22902-1288

T: +1 434 980 2221
F: +1 434 980 2253
vCard
Brian A Kahn Brian A. Kahn
Partner
201 North Tryon Street
Suite 3000
Charlotte, NC 28202-2146

T: +1 704 343 2351
F: +1 704 444 8869
vCard
Results 1-3 of 3
Speaking Engagement

2017 ATA Forum for Motor Carrier General Counsel

July 16-19, 2017
Beaver Creek, CO
Speaking Engagement

Transportation Megaconference XIII: Trucking and Motor Carrier Litigation

March 8-10, 2017
New Orleans, LA
Speaking Engagement

2014 IWLA Warehouse Legal Practice Symposium

June 18-19, 2014
Rosemont, IL
Results 1-3 of 3
Results 1-14 of 14
Legal Alert

The WannaCry Cyberattack: Steps Businesses Must Take Now

Password Protected
May 15, 2017
Article

FDA Flexes Its Muscles in Food Fights

Strategic risk and crisis management take center stage as criminalization of enforcement threatens companies and their executives

Metropolitan Corporate Counsel
March 30, 2016
Article

A Rose by Any Other Name Is a Lawsuit

Courtroom Battle over the Labeling Practices of Food Manufacturers

Food Manufacturing
January/February 2013
Privilege Points

ADHD Litigation White Paper

November 2007
Results 1-14 of 14