Producer responsibility


 

 

 

 

 

The Firm is actively involved primarily, in judicial and extrajudicial legal assistance for manufacturer’s liability for defective products.

Manufacturer’s liability for defective products refers to the civil liability of those who manufacture a product – or market it in Italy, or who represent themselves as the manfacturer by affixing their trademark – for damage to person or goods caused by a defective product.
This is the case, for example, for damages caused by a gate that falls on a passer by, or by a heater that overheats and causes burns and/or damages to goods.
It is a complex and extensive subject, governed, in particular, by the European Directive 1984/374/EC and, in Italy, by the Italian Consumer Code (articles 114 to 127) and the Italian Civil Code (art.icle 2043; article 1494).

General product safety (= the product is or may by dangerous)

The liability for defective products is often a result of the failure to comply with general product safety regulations , which is one of the Firm’s specialist areas, both in terms of judicial and extrajudial legal adivice and assistance, including in the opposition of sanctions issued by the competent authorities.

This subject is governerd by the European Directive 2001/95/EC and the  Italian Consumer Code (articles 102 to 113).
The expression “general product safety” refers to the requirement for compliace by the party that manufactures or introduces in Italy (for example toy dolls painted with a legally banned substance) or enables its immediate use by a user as a part of the provision of a service ( for example  hair dye applied by a hairdresser or a treadmill made available to the customers of a fitness club or hotel), and the party that distributes it, with all the legal obligations imposed to ensure consumer safety, including: the requirement to only manufacture/distribute products that are “safe “ becuase they comply with the applicable regulations; to inform the competent authorities in the event of danger to consumers; to monitor and keep a record of complaints to withdraw dangerous products from the market –  and if necessary to recall them from end users; to permit checks and inspections by the competent authorities, and so on.

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The Firm provides advisory and assistance services – including the drafting of agreements in Italian and English for purchase/sale,distriustion, tenders, technical support etc.  –   to manufacturers, retailers, and technical support centres for all matters relating to the legal or contractual guarantee on the products sold.

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Manufacturer liability for defective products
General product safety – Guarantees

Guarantees  (= remedies provide for by law or by contract for defects or non-quality of the product sold)

The term “guarantees” refers in particular to the legal guarantee required from the seller of consumer goods to the non-professional buyer (i.e. within any agreement involving supply: sale, tender, contract for works etc.). This subject is governed by the European Directive 1999/44/EC and, in Italy, by th Italian Consumer Code (articles 128 to 135).

But “guarantee” also means the the contractual commitment from the manufacturer or importer to the final buyer – contained in the relevant “certificate of guarantee” che accompanying each product –  to repair the product marketed if it has any malfunctions and/or defects. This aspect is regulated, in addition to the commitments contained in the abovementioned “Certificate”, by the mandatory legal regulations in the Italian Consumer Code (article 133) and governed by the provisions of the Italian Civil Code on purchases and sales (article 1490 and following)

More details on the Firm’s activities can be found in the following publications by Maurizio Iorio on the above subjects:

  PDF: On the seller’s obligation, or not, to make spare parts available for a certain period of time in line with Italian legislation and that of the major European countries . Article published on the number of May (published in June 2012 ) of the Italian magazine Market Place.

  PDF: Liability and guarantee of the components supplier towards the producer of the equipment/system in which they are incorporated . The supplier TOM sells components/sub-assemblies to the producer DICK (e.g., printed circuit boards, diodes, LEDs, transistors, hard disks, but also finished products, such as vaporizers, fan coils, chillers or industrial PCs) intended to be incorporated by the latter into a final product (whether this is a single good, such as a TV set, or a system as, for example, a refrigeration unit).The question arises as to what are the guarantee obligations of TOM towards DICK and how TOM may somehow limit them. This with particular regard to one of the most transversal regulations in the electronic sector – where often in such cases conflicts occur between supplier and producer – namely that on electromagnetic compatibility. Article published on the July 2015 issue of the magazine Market Place 

Documents attached in English or in Italian language:

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2) – Consiglio Direttivo 87/357/EEC del 25 giugno 1987 concernente il ravvicinamento delle legislazioni degli Stati membri relative ai prodotti che, avendo un aspetto diverso da quello che sono in realtà, compromettono la salute o la sicurezza dei consumatori
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3) Decreto Legislativo italiano 25.01.1992, n. 73 attuazione in Italia D.87/357/CE
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4) – Decreto Legislativo Italiano 06.09.2005 n ° 206 anche detto “Codice del Consumo“ (Edizione bilingue)

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5) – EC Council Regulation No. 339/93 of 8.02.1993
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6) – EC European Parliament and Council  Regulation No. 2006/2004 of  27.10.2004
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7) – Directive  No. 378 of 03.05.1988
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8) – Legislative Decree 27.09.1991 No. 313- Attach. 9
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9) – Memo of Ministero dello Sviluppo economico
(May 2007)
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Council Directive 85/374/EEC of 25 July 1985
(the Product Liability Directive)