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Products Liability Litigation: Discovering and Using Evidence (or Absence) of Other Similar Incidents

Recording of a 90-minute CLE video webinar with Q&A

This program is included with the Strafford CLE Pass. Click for more information.
This program is included with the Strafford All-Access Pass. Click for more information.

Conducted on Wednesday, January 24, 2024

Recorded event now available

or call 1-800-926-7926

This CLE course will prepare product liability counsel to argue for or against letting the jury hear evidence of other incidents (or the lack thereof) involving the same or substantially similar products under substantially similar occurrences. The panel will also discuss the risks and benefits to product manufacturers of collecting incident data before litigation with an eye toward maximizing the chance of favorable rulings.


Evidence of “other similar incidents”—that a particular product has caused harm in the same way that the plaintiff was allegedly injured—can be a powerful tool for plaintiffs, and equally prejudicial to the defense if not carefully vetted. Equally compelling can be evidence that out of many, many uses over time, only the plaintiff has sustained the subject injury. Thus, the discovery and (in)admissibility of other similar incident (OSI) evidence (or its absence) is crucial in many product liability cases.

OSI evidence (or its absence) must involve the same or a substantially similar product and a substantially similar factual scenario to the case at bar. What makes a different product or different facts "substantially" similar to the case at hand is highly dependent on the type of product at issue, as well as the type of harm alleged and the particular circumstances of the case.

Listen as our authoritative panel of product liability counsel discusses strategies for handling OSI evidence and admitting favorable evidence on product safety, as well as the importance of establishing the foundation for these issues early on in a lawsuit. The panel will also discuss tips for counseling clients on incident reporting procedures.



  1. Strategies regarding the admission or exclusion of OSI evidence
    1. Restricting the scope of other incidents through written discovery and responding to requests for disclosure of incidents
    2. Limiting the relevance of incidents through opposing counsel's experts
    3. Attacking purported relevance of OSI evidence
    4. Dealing with OSI at trial
  2. Strategies to introduce evidence of lack of similar incidents
    1. Laying the foundation during discovery and at trial
    2. Countering common objections by plaintiff's counsel
    3. The basis for the admissibility of evidence regarding the absence of OSIs
  3. Counseling clients to establish solid recordkeeping procedures


The panel will review these and other key issues:

  • What types of evidence may be introduced as OSI, and what foundational issues exist with regard to different types of OSI evidence?
  • When can incidents involving a different product, different product model, or different product model year constitute OSI evidence?
  • How can product liability counsel use favorable evidence of OSI or the lack of similar incidents to bolster their own client's case?
  • What are best practices for reporting and maintaining records of product incidents that will benefit product manufacturers in the event of future litigation?


Rogers, Emily
Emily J. Rogers

Campbell Conroy & O'Neil

Ms. Rogers is a Member in the Pennsylvania office of Campbell Conroy & O’Neil. She is a seasoned trial...  |  Read More

Wang, Katherine
Katherine A. Wang

Campbell Conroy & O'Neil

Ms. Wang focuses her practice on complex product liability defense and appellate practice in the defense of high stakes...  |  Read More

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