Louisiana Product Liability Attorney Defense Law Firm
Our products liability lawyers represent national and international manufacturers throughout Louisiana’s courts, especially in cases with significant exposure involving industrial equipment or medical devices. Parties on either side of product claims have a high regard for members of our practice, thanks to:
- Our lawyers’ track record with the Louisiana Products Liability Act and its application to complex litigation and catastrophic losses.
- Our strength with early investigation and trial strategies, identification of non-product failure causes, management of experts and aggressive use of motion practice to narrow the issues with a focus to gain early dismissals or removal to federal court.
- Our skillful and efficient handling of large document review and management, and our agile team approach for effectively guiding the course of the litigation.
We have years of trial and appellate experience with multi-party product cases, insurance subrogation issues and class actions. Many of our clients are manufacturers of consumer, commercial and industrial products, including the life sciences, such as medical and surgical products. We also represent makers of all manner of products from construction materials to microprocessor-based control systems to industrial equipment used in the region’s chemical plants, oil refineries and other industrial facilities, where claims arise from fire, explosion, chemical leak, equipment/process malfunction or other catastrophic failure, toxic tort, serious injury or wrongful death.
Many clients hire us over and over again. They tell us they value our continuous client communication and status updates, civility and competitive rates. We are also known for the effective way we staff a case. Our technical backgrounds and abilities also set us apart, as one of our litigators is a Professional Engineer and another is a Registered Nurse.
Recent Experience Highlights
Client Story: Keogh Cox Blends Knowledge of Business, Products Liability and Construction Law to Provide a Unique Defense in Complex Litigation
Where we started: Keogh Cox represented an international pipe manufacturer in a suit by a major contractor alleging that a pipe fitting, installed in a newly constructed chemical plant, was defective, and cost the contractor a substantial amount to replace all similar fittings. At issue was whether the pipe fitting met exacting mechanical standards such that it was appropriate to move hazardous chemicals. The causes of action included redhibition, products liability, breach of contract, bad faith and misrepresentation.
Our roadmap: By using a team of tort, business and construction attorneys, Keogh Cox was able to blend its strengths in construction law, products liability and business law to effectively and efficiently address the issues of the claim.
Resolution: Through the use of pre-trial motions, to include a Daubert motion to limit the plaintiff’s expert testimony, we narrowed the complex issues for trial and highlighted weaknesses in the plaintiff’s case, which allowed for a more favorable settlement.
Client Story: Keogh Cox utilizes Aggressive Motion Practice and Targeted Discovery to Obtain Summary Judgment Victory in High Exposure Case
Where we started: Keogh Cox represented a national conveyor manufacturer in a case involving missing conveyor guards and a severely injured plaintiff.
Our roadmap: Keogh Cox developed discovery targeted to specific requirements of the Louisiana Products Liability Act, through which it is was determined that the conveyor manufacturer was not at fault and a motion for summary judgment was filed.
Resolution: The motion for summary judgment was granted and an intense trial with potential high exposure for the client was avoided.
Client Story: Keogh Cox Approaches Complex Products Liability Cases Using both a Practical Understanding of the Industry Involved and Knowledge of the Legal Issues to Develop an Effective Resolution Strategy
Where we started: Our client, an international air-conditioning equipment manufacturer, was sued by a surgery center for damage to surgical supplies, loss of business and other consequential damages, amounting to a large dollar loss, which resulted from high humidity in the facility during the start-up phase of the new unit. The plaintiff alleged a clear-cut case of fault, relying on the fact that the outside air damper on the unit opened fully during the first night of operation, allowing too much moist air into the facility. Plaintiff alleged various theories of liability, typical for products claims: negligence and breach of contract in commissioning services, redhibition, and defective product, breach of express/implied warranty and failure to warn under the LPLA.
Our roadmap: We filed a summary judgment motion outlining multiple defenses: plaintiff’s failure to take adequate precautions to avoid the risk of damage; waiver of warranty against redhibitory defects; failure to produce evidence of a defect in the unit; and the surgery center’s use of the equipment was not reasonably anticipated by the manufacturer, a threshold defense under LPLA, in that plaintiff failed to conduct a test and balance of the unit after installation and the manufacturer did not guarantee uninterrupted operation of the unit.
Resolution: The court granted partial summary judgment dismissing the redhibition and LPLA claims, reserving only the negligent commissioning claim for trial. With the reduced chances of success at trial, the plaintiff accepted a reasonable settlement, which avoided further expert and trial expenses.
Client Story: Keogh Cox Employs a Thorough Investigation Early in the Litigation Process to Obtain Accurate Factual Information About the Claim
Where we started: We represented a national air-conditioning equipment manufacturer in a fire case at a large national home-improvement store chain, involving a large dollar loss. Multiple defendants were involved, to include the contractor that built the store and installed the equipment, and the maintenance contractor responsible for servicing alleged leaking gas control valves on the equipment. Initially, the issue in the case was the appropriate allocation of fault among the defendants because plaintiff relied on a fire department investigation report that placed the origin of the fire at the client’s air-conditioning unit to prove its case. The investigation was challenging because the store was destroyed by a storm after the fire but before our client was sued.
Our roadmap: Through a detailed, thorough analysis and investigation, we were able to obtain a retraction from the fire department investigator based on evidence that he had not considered at the time of issuing his report, which called into question the point of origin of the fire. We also showed the unreliability of the test methods used by the maintenance contractor for detecting the alleged leaks in the gas valves.
Resolution: Once we produced the investigator’s retraction of his fire origin and cause report, which had formed the basis of the plaintiff’s case, we were able to immediately settle the case and get our client dismissed from the litigation, to avoid the further expense and risk associated with the pending trial.
More Details about Products Liability
Our trial attorneys are recognized throughout Louisiana and in all of its courts for effective strategies in representing manufacturers of products large, small and in between, in claims involving:
- Manufacturing equipment injury defense
- Consumer product injury defense
- Food products defense
- Industrial equipment failure defense
- Medical device defense
- Louisiana Products Liability Act
- Breach of express/implied warranty
- Negligent commissioning and start-up services incidental to product sales
- Litigation avoidance and pre-claim legal assistance