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Mikolajczyk v. Ford Motor Company, A Synthesis of Approaches in Design Defect Cases

Vol. 19, No. 1 (19.1.71).

Summary: Here the Illinois Supreme Court in a product liability case held that the plaintiff and defendant are each entitled to “pick his own poison”. That is to say, a plaintiff can pursue a design defect case using either the consumer benefit or risk/utility approach and the defendant can likewise choose the more favorable doctrine in defending the claim. As the court recognized, this “menu” approach creates a myriad of problems in instructing the jury.  Read More