Product Liability and The Engineer 82001

Note: Last day of class ends at approximately 1:00 pm

In the past few decades, product liability law has dramatically changed the manufacturer's outlook in the design and manufacture of product. The concept of safety and reliability has been altered from a purely engineering/manufacturing concept to a legal/manufacturing approach. This new approach requires an understanding of legal concepts as related to the manufacturing and design process. The engineer's role has shifted to include a safety audit analysis to minimize the existence of a product defect and/or to defend the product in a way that is responsive to the legal concerns.

An overnight assignment will be made by the instructor. It will consist of problems drawn from actual cases and a group project that examines the design, instructions, and warnings of a product.

Learning Objectives

By attending this seminar, you will be able to:

  • Relate legal concepts as they apply to the manufacturing/design process
  • Use safety audit analysis techniques to minimize or eliminate product defects during design, thus reducing product liability
  • Discuss defense of product from a legal perspective
  • Recognize the importance of potential liability as it relates to the manufacturer

Who Should Attend

Persons responsible for product design, including managers and designers; corporate risk managers; persons responsible for developing and approving product instructions and warnings; marketing personnel; production and quality assurance managers and personnel; personnel responsible for product safety and those persons, including lawyers, who oversee and manage product liability issues.


Participants should have an undergraduate engineering degree or commensurate experience in manufacturing or product liability.


"The attendee input into theories discussed by the instructor was very effective and applied the theories to day-to-day events."
Mark A. Byrd
GM Investigator
Royal Insurance

"The instructors enthusiastically present the subject with great knowledge and detail."
Allen F. VanDerStuyf
Manager, Component Systems
Electro-Wire Products

"Very useful introduction to law and product liability for the testifying expert."
Richard Ross
Ross, Kennedy & Pfeiffer

"Al's graphic descriptions of real world examples help convey the law of product liability in a manner that is uniquely understood by the engineer."
Henry Krautner
Manager Design Engineering
Detroit Diesel Corp.


You must complete all course contact hours and successfully pass the learning assessment to obtain CEUs.

(Day two will end at approximately 1:00 p.m.)
  • Legal Concepts
    • Negligence: elements, defenses
    • Strict liability: section 402A (elements, defenses)
    • Warranties: express, implied
  • Analysis of Defect
    • Meaning of unreasonable danger
    • Production defect
    • Design defect
    • Defect by words
  • Designing for Reasonable Safety
    • Products' use, users & environment
    • Product safety audit
  • The Role of Standards in Design
  • Warnings
    • Guidelines for design & warnings
    • Functions & use
  • Problem Analysis by Participants
  • Review of a Product Design by Participants
Charles F. Seyboldt

Mr. Charles Seyboldt has degrees in Mechanical Engineering and Law. Since 2003 he has been acquiring experience in the transportation industry, having engineering responsibilities covering a broad range of product and manufacturing technologies. He is a registered Professional Engineer and a registered patent agent.

Duration: 1.5 Days

Fees: $899.00

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