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Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Product Liability for ISO 9001 certified companies

QICID: 10262
Title: ISO 9000 and Product Liability

Copyright: 1995, ASQC
Author: Scott, Gregory G.; Kerwin, Sheila T.
Organization: Popham, Haik, Schnobrich & Kaufman, Ltd., Minneapolis, MN 55402
Subject: Certification,Documentation,ISO 9000,Product liability,Negligence,Prevention,Legal actions;
Series: Annual Quality Congress, Cincinnati OH, Vol. 49, No. 0, May 1995, pp. 509-514 

Abstract: The relationship between ISO 9000 and product is often unclear. ISO 9000 is a quality standard, not a liability shield. Although ISO 9000 certification is not a defense in product liability cases, many of the documents developed during the registration process may become court documents in product liability lawsuits.
Negligence, strict liability, and breach of warranty are the three claims an injured person may make when suing a manufacturer for a defect in the design, manufacture, or warnings and instructions accompanying the product. Negligence results from the failure of a manufacturer to exercise reasonable care in product design, development, testing, or construction. Strict liability focuses on product design and reasonable care in the manufacturing process. Breach of warranty cases focus on a failure to comply with an express or implied warranty.
The plaintiff's counsel may request any and all documents generated during the ISO 9000 registration process. These documents could pose a problem if they do not address legal connotations such as defects or if they contain remarks that could be interpreted as a lack of concern for defects. A manufacturer's best defense is product liability prevention measures and data analysis by safety experts. 

Number of pages: 6
Price for ASQ Members: $5.00
Price for List/Forum/Division: $10.00


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