Product Liability

For manufacturers, product liability is a very important area of law. Japanese product liability law applies not only to consumers, but also to business-to-business transactions. In addition, in actual litigation, the burden of proof on the existence or non-existence of defects is often shifted to manufacturers. The lawyers in our firm who have considerable experience in solving problems relating to product liability are able to provide practical advice, starting from the product development stage, on what kinds of design tend to lead the court to identify defects under product liability law, what kind of labels should be placed in order to avoid "representational defects" and so forth.

Our office provides wide-ranging legal advice and support on product liability matters, including those relating to product recalls, reporting to governmental agencies and responding to victims and the press when product defects arise. We provide legal support in the issuance of initial responses that are key to early resolution, until the final resolution of cases, including in searching for the cause of the defect and collection of recall costs. Furthermore, when manufacturers are charged under the product liability law, including in litigation, we are able to provide tailored advice depending on each case, including by proposing effective arguments and evidentiary proof depending on the contents and characteristics of the relevant products, as well as representing manufacturers during negotiations and actual dispute resolution. Our firm has extensive experience in representing clients, including major pharmaceutical companies, and has won favorable judgments and resolutions for them in the area of product liability litigation and disputes.

Exporters must also consider the risk of getting involved in product liability disputes abroad. When litigation or arbitration cases are filed in countries where discovery is available, such as in the United States, Japanese corporations are forced to take on a heavy burden just to respond to the discovery requests, and if the Japanese companies fail to respond appropriately, there is substantial risk that they will incur serious disadvantages in the litigation. Our office, with the cooperation of leading foreign law firms, provides support to manufacturers who are exporting products in order for them to resolve and prevent disputes in the area of foreign product liability.

Contact us