• FreeAdvice has a new Terms of Service and Privacy Policy, effective May 25, 2018.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our Terms of Service and use of cookies.

treestand failure/case?

Accident - Bankruptcy - Criminal Law / DUI - Business - Consumer - Employment - Family - Immigration - Real Estate - Tax - Traffic - Wills   Please click a topic or scroll down for more.



Two weeks ago I fell from a tree in Michigan and now that my surgeries are over and I am slowly recovering my senses, I am getting madder and madder about what caused the fall and wonder if I have a case.

I have been an avid hunter and treestand user for 25 years. I am a very careful climber and have never so much as slipped while climbing or setting in a stand.
I purchaced a stand (used) from a friend this summer. It was manufactured by a leading company in the business and it is a model that was manufactured over 7 years ago.It was in very good shape. I set the stand up at ground level for a test and it seemed to work fine although it flexed a bit under my full weight. I weigh about 40# less than the max weight stated on the stand.
I set up the stand in a good spot the next day. When it was set I stepped onto the stand with my full weight. Again, it flexed a bit, then it just dropped from under me. I grabbed for branches on the way down and between my grabbing and falling into branches was able to get stopped before I hit the ground.
I had a branch punture the back of my arm then rip around to the front of my arm and it cut the ulner nerve completely. I have lost the feeling in my left hand. The surgion has repaired the nerve but says it will take up to two years of therapy to recover, if It even works.
As I see it the stand had two different flaws in it that, when combined, caused it to release itself from the tree.
The manufacturer still makes stands like this one but I see that both the flaws have been addressed and this cant happen to someone else.
Could I have a case here?
I want to call the manufacturer to warn anyone out there that may have one of these older models. Should I?
I would greatly appreciate any help.
Thank you KA




Dear aylaka:
Sorry to hear of your situation.
Did the prior owner ever have problems with this stand? If so, you (unfortunately) may have a cause of action against your friend for not warning you.
You say the stand had 2 different flaws in it. If these flaws are part of the design or are caused by the manufacturing, you probably have a product liability cause of action against the manufacturer. And if this is a design flaw of over 7 years, chances are you're not the first person to have been injured by it.
I recommend taking your medical records, medical bills, the stand itself (if logistically possible; I don't know how big this stand is), and any information you have on the stand (perhaps from the manufacturer's website or instruction booklet or any other source) to a local personal injury attorney for a consultation. (And just because you consult with an attorney doesn't mean you have to hire one; you can just pay him/her for the consultation time). With the bodily injuries you've sustained, I'll bet if you decide to retain counsel, you'll find one who will take this case on a contingency fee (ie, attorney fees are paid out of the settlement check, not your pocketbook.)
You asked if you have a case: Strong enough to warrant talking to local counsel. I think someone who can physically see the stand and review your actual records can give you a more definite answer than I can over the web.
Best of luck to you.

Find the Right Lawyer for Your Legal Issue!

Fast, Free, and Confidential