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Today’s economy depends heavily on the enormous range of products that are sold daily to consumers. Indeed, consumer demand for both the necessities and conveniences of life � everything from lawn mowers and ovens to trampolines and espresso makers � drives many manufacturers constantly to develop new products to sell. In today’s litigious society, however, virtually every product sold represents at least the potential for product liability exposure. Jury awards and settlements frequently make headlines � everyday household appliances, such as coffee makers, fryers, and blenders, have yielded damage awards or settlements as high as $2.25 million. Injuries from lawn mowers have generated awards or settlements as high as $2.6 million. Even furniture has the potential to yield awards or settlements in excess of a million dollars. Moreover, product liability exposure has ruined certain industries, eg, asbestos, and small companies without adequate insurance protection could face bankruptcy from a single product recall.

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