Preserving Evidence In Dangerous Product Cases


Closeup Damaged Front Wheel And BumperTime and again here at our firm we see situations where clients may have been injured by defective products but due to the failure preserve crucial evidence, the claim oftentimes is irretrievably lost. An example might be an exploding tire where there is a tire blowout which causes a vehicle to overturn. Unless the tire itself is preserved as evidence and can be examined to determine the cause of its failure, for obvious reasons, it would be impossible to prove a defective product due to a design or manufacturing problem with the product as opposed to poor maintenance, under inflation, over inflation or other sundry causes other than a defect in the product. The same is true for house fires which result is serious injuries or death where a suspected heater, air conditioning unit or air purifier is believed to have caused the fire. Unless the product is preserved and examined by an expert, the evidence necessary to prove a products liability claim will be missing and therefore the claim virtually impossible to pursue.

In any case where serious injuries or a wrongful death results from a situation where a defective product is believed to have contributed to the incident, it is absolutely imperative that all available evidence be preserved for examination by experts. Obviously, the initial focus in such cases is on the injury or death and not the possibility of a lawsuit. However, if the cause of the incident is believed to be a defective product, nonetheless, family members, investigators, law enforcement personnel and other people connected to the incident should do what they can to preserve the evidence for later examination. The family can hardly be blamed for remembering to do so during a time of personal tragedy and grief but family friends, outsiders, investigators and other personnel connected to the incident can and should do so in order to have the claim properly investigated. Absent preservation of critical evidence, it may be impossible to obtain justice for the victim of a dangerous and defective product.

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About Steve Wisebram

At Finch McCranie, LLP, Steven R. Wisebram focuses his practice of law on serious personal injury cases and business litigation. Over the last 35 years, he has amassed significant civil and criminal trial experience during his career, which provides his clients a distinct advantage in both the courtroom and in negotiations. Beginning in 2005, Mr. Wisebram has been selected to Georgia’s Super Lawyers list.

Before becoming a partner with Finch McCranie, LLP, Mr. Wisebram served in several attorney positions with the federal government. He began his legal career in 1977 as legal counsel to a Congressional Committee on Standards of Official Conduct. In 1980 he served as an Assistant United States Attorney for the Northern District of Georgia for almost seven years. For the last three years of that position, he also served on the United States Department of Justice’s Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force.

Mr. Wisebram is licensed in the District of Columbia and the state of Georgia. He is admitted to practice before the United States District Court for the Northern District of Georgia and the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit and the Eleventh Circuit.

He is a graduate of Harvard University and Emory Law School.