Product Liability

Overview

Industry Contact(s)

Overview

Honigman’s Product Liability Industry Group teams with our clients as strategic partners to protect their businesses, manage their risk and navigate challenging legal issues relating to their products. Our close collaboration with and understanding of a client’s business operations, strategies and culture has enhanced our ability to deliver the best possible service and value. And, our clients have come to expect and rely upon our “round the clock” responsiveness, creativity, resourcefulness and efficiency in tackling their most challenging business problems.

Manage Risk

Opportunities to manage and eliminate product-related risks often exist well before a product claim arises. Honigman’s team includes many attorneys with advanced degrees and substantial experience in dealing with issues, which can affect the success of our clients’ products in the marketplace, beginning with the design of the product and continuing through its life in the marketplace. We regularly work with clients on issues relating to product safety and testing, the impact of governmental regulations and industry standards, consumer and market regulations, and other issues affecting their products.

When claims do arise, Honigman’s attorneys have decades of experience working through product claims, both big and small. Many of our matters involve multi-front challenges and intense media attention, with reputational implications. We are often brought into matters that arise in the context of highly debated scientific, medical and regulatory controversies, as well as social and environmental controversies, relating to the safety or effectiveness of a wide range of products – from pharmaceuticals and popular OTC brands to industrial equipment, chemicals, and consumer and automotive products. Our attorneys have considerable experience in navigating these complexities, drawing upon lessons learned from a broad array of matters over many decades, enabling us to advise clients on how to most effectively manage risk and attain their business objectives.

We have experience advising clients at every stage of a matter, and can counsel clients as a purely prophylactic measure, at the early stages or onset of an issue, as well as at the “crisis” stage. We appreciate that any given dispute may be just one part of a broader business relationship, requiring a litigation approach that preserves that relationship while still aggressively pursuing our client’s position.

Litigation Tactics

While we are frequently engaged to represent clients in the most complex “bet-the-company” cases, clients also seek our counsel on matters that are not on the front page of major newspapers, but are still significant to their business and reputation. Our work spans the life of a problem and at every phase of litigation: from developing pre-litigation strategies, to discovery and motion practice, through trials and any appeals. Indeed, we have an impressive courtroom record in the defense of matters, both in the U.S. and worldwide, involving class actions, multi-district and multi-state proceedings, arbitrations and joint state/federal litigations. Our practice also involves representing clients in investigations by government consumer and regulatory agencies, congressional committees and state attorneys general.

Creative Exit Strategies

Recognizing that a legal dispute or trial may not always be in our client’s best business interest, we also have engineered a variety of creative exit strategies, including implementing class and non-class settlements in a diverse number of cases. Our clients also turn to us for our judgment in helping to manage risks when an issue is percolating in order to avoid litigation and reach resolutions that make sense for their business.

Project Management

We recognize that a “one size fits all” approach does not provide the value our clients expect and deserve. Our extensive experience and deep bench across practice areas provide us with the flexibility to deploy the specific resources warranted for a particular project. This approach allows us to staff our cases in a thoughtful manner and also enables us to manage the delivery of services to reduce overall costs. It has led to a long-standing and proven track record of success in mass tort and consumer actions for some of the world’s most sophisticated public and private companies of all sizes.

In addition to utilizing these project management methods to staff our matters and aggressively manage costs, we offer a variety of alternative fee arrangements, including flat fees, capped fees, holdbacks and blended rates for clients who may be interested in alternatives to hourly billing. Honigman embraces these creative approaches to fee arrangements and has found that both the firm and our clients benefit and are pleased with the results when we employ these arrangements. Our ultimate goal in all matters is to provide our clients with the highest level of legal service to maximize the likelihood of success within a cost structure that meets the client’s needs.