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Injured Worker’s Case Clarifies Wisconsin Product Liability Law

Dec. 29, 2022, 10:05 PM

A utility line technician may pursue his suit against Columbus McKinnon Corp. over injuries he allegedly sustained when using its equipment, the Wisconsin Supreme Court ruled in its first interpretation of a 2011 product liability law that set forth how to prove a claim of strict liability for design defects.

A test of dangerousness based on consumer expectations remains in place, the state high court said Wednesday.

The court rejected the manufacturer’s argument that language in a section of the new law meant the legislature adopted a “risk-utility” balancing test as a replacement for the consumer-contemplation standard. An intermediate appeals ...