2015 ORS 30.920¹
When seller or lessor of product liable
  • effect of liability rule

(1) One who sells or leases any product in a defective condition unreasonably dangerous to the user or consumer or to the property of the user or consumer is subject to liability for physical harm or damage to property caused by that condition, if:

(a) The seller or lessor is engaged in the business of selling or leasing such a product; and

(b) The product is expected to and does reach the user or consumer without substantial change in the condition in which it is sold or leased.

(2) The rule stated in subsection (1) of this section shall apply, even though:

(a) The seller or lessor has exercised all possible care in the preparation and sale or lease of the product; and

(b) The user, consumer or injured party has not purchased or leased the product from or entered into any contractual relations with the seller or lessor.

(3) It is the intent of the Legislative Assembly that the rule stated in subsections (1) and (2) of this section shall be construed in accordance with the Restatement (Second) of Torts sec. 402A, Comments a to m (1965). All references in these comments to sale, sell, selling or seller shall be construed to include lease, leases, leasing and lessor.

(4) Nothing in this section shall be construed to limit the rights and liabilities of sellers and lessors under principles of common law negligence or under ORS chapter 72. [1979 c.866 §2]

Notes of Decisions

While this sec­tion codifies rules set forth in sec­tion 402A of Restate­ment (Second) of Torts (1965) to govern design defect cases, and provides that rules should be construed in accordance with com­ments a to m of sec­tion 402A, statute does not prescribe particular construc­tion of the rule or its com­ments; because test for unreasonably dangerous, cast in terms of reasonable seller, is equivalent to com­ment i's test cast in terms of consumer, trial court did not err in giving jury instruc­tion cast only in terms of reasonable seller. Willamette Essential Oils v. Herrold & Jensen, 68 Or App 401, 683 P2d 1374 (1984)

Where stated intent of Legislative Assembly is that this sec­tion is to be construed in accordance with com­ments to sec­tion 402A of Restate­ment (Second) of Torts and such com­ments do not limit applica­tion of sec­tion to manufactured products, live skunk purchased from defendants was product within meaning of this sec­tion; right to recover for emo­­tion­al distress is limited to recovery for emo­­tion­al distress suffered by per­sons who suffer physical harm. Sease v. Taylor's Pets, 74 Or App 110, 700 P2d 1054 (1985), Sup Ct review denied

Word "consumer" in this sec­tion does not include all who might be affected by product. Ewen v. Mc Lean Trucking Co., 300 Or 24, 706 P2d 929 (1985)

Availability of strict tort liability claim depends on type of defect, not type of injury. Agristor Credit Corp. v. Schmidlin, 601 F Supp 1307 (1985)

In adopting statutory analog of Restate­ment (Second) Torts, §402A, legislature made substantial modifica­tion by using phrase "user, consumer or injured party," and injury to per­son by consump­tion of prescrip­tion medica­tion was subject to this sec­tion, even though medica­tion had not been prescribed for per­son who consumed it. Docken v. Ciba-Geigy, 86 Or App 277, 739 P2d 591 (1987), Sup Ct review denied

In ac­tion against pharmacy for neg­li­gently filling prescrip­tion, expert testimony of community standard of care is re­quired to prove that pharmacist neg­li­gently failed to warn of dangers of prescrip­tion drug. Docken v. Ciba-Geigy, 101 Or App 252, 790 P2d 45 (1990), Sup Ct review denied

Where defendant acted as service provider by affixing new tread to casing, there was no sale of defective product. Watts v. Rubber Tree, Inc., 118 Or App 557, 848 P2d 1210 (1993), Sup Ct review denied, as modified by 121 Or App 21, 853 P2d 1365 (1993)

Although adequate warning on faultlessly-made product will prevent reliance on theory of strict liability in failure-to-warn defect case, product with manufacturing defect cannot be made nondefective simply by placing warning on product. Glover v. BIC Corp., 987 F2d 1410 (1993)

Reasonable manufacturer test has been repudiated and replaced with consumer expecta­tion as sole test. Burns v. General Motors Corp., 133 Or App 555, 891 P2d 1354 (1995)

Supplier of component part that is not inherently defective is not strictly liable for failure to warn of dangers that may arise upon integra­tion of part into machine built by an­oth­er. Hoyt v. Vitek, Inc., 134 Or App 271, 894 P2d 1225 (1995)

Plaintiff must allege facts sufficient to infer unreasonable danger to per­sons or to prop­erty other than product itself. Carpenter v. Land O' Lakes, Inc., 880 F Supp 758 (D. Or. 1995)

Allega­tion of commercial loss due to product failure or damage to product is insufficient to state claim for relief. Carpenter v. Land O' Lakes, Inc., 880 F Supp 758 (D. Or. 1995)

On-site manufacture of hybrid product is not exempt where injury is due to defect in product provided rather than defect in repair or installa­tion. Brokenshire v. Rivas and Rivas, Ltd., 142 Or App 555, 922 P2d 696 (1996)

Design safety is viewed only from consumer expecta­tion perspective, not from reasonable manufacturer perspective. McCathern v. Toyota Motor Corp., 332 Or 59, 23 P3d 320 (2001)

To prove product was unreasonably dangerous due to defect, plaintiff must prove that at time product left seller's hands, product was in unreasonably dangerous condi­tion to extent not contemplated by ultimate consumer and in dangerous condi­tion beyond expecta­tion of ordinary consumer having knowledge common to community re­gard­ing characteristics of product. McCathern v. Toyota Motor Corp., 332 Or 59, 23 P3d 320 (2001)

Prima Facie Case for Product Liability Is Established If

1) dangerous defect is shown to have existed at time of manufacture, regardless of later modifica­tion; or 2) dangerous defect is not shown to have existed at time of manufacture and it is shown that modifica­tion probably was not essential to cause of injury. Ensley v. Strato-Lift, Inc., 134 F. Supp. 2d 1191 (D. Or. 2001)

Defect that causes mere economic damage without physical destruc­tion or injury to other prop­erty does not provide basis for product liability claim. Russell v. Deere & Co., 186 Or App 78, 61 P3d 955 (2003)

Law Review Cita­tions

16 WLR 219 (1979); 59 OLR 374 (1981); 32 WLR 851 (1996); 78 OLR 1 (1999)

Law Review Cita­tions

58 OLR 545 (1980); 18 WLR 613, 631 (1982); 64 OLR 517 (1986); 69 OLR 147 (1990)


1 Legislative Counsel Committee, CHAPTER 30—Actions and Suits in Particular Cases, https://­www.­oregonlegislature.­gov/­bills_laws/­ors/­ors030.­html (2015) (last ac­cessed Jul. 16, 2016).
 
2 Legislative Counsel Committee, Annotations to the Oregon Revised Stat­utes, Cumulative Supplement - 2015, Chapter 30, https://­www.­oregonlegislature.­gov/­bills_laws/­ors/­ano030.­html (2015) (last ac­cessed Jul. 16, 2016).
 
3 OregonLaws.org assembles these lists by analyzing references between Sections. Each listed item refers back to the current Section in its own text. The result reveals relationships in the code that may not have otherwise been apparent.