The key facts about product liability in Saudi Arabia. Prepared in association with STA, an international law firm, this is an extract from The Pharma Legal Handbook: Saudi Arabia, available to purchase here for GBP 99.
1. What types of liability are recognized in your jurisdiction?
Product liability is the area of law in which manufacturers, distributors, suppliers and retailers are held responsible for any injuries products cause. Generally, there are three liabilities: Civil liability, punitive liability and disciplinary liability recognised in Saudi Arabia.
2. How do these types of liabilities apply to the manufacturers of medicines and devices?
The Consumer Protection Association of Saudi Arabia aims at protecting civil liability by protecting the consumer’s interests, safeguarding and defending consumer rights; protecting him/her against all kinds of adulteration, counterfeit, fraud, deceit, falsification and exaggerated prices; and promoting consumer awareness and rationalized consumption.
Punitive liability is applicable when manufacturing, acquiring, displaying or selling products that do not conform to applicable standards specifications.
Disciplinary liability is when a manufacturer failed to meet professional standards, requirements, and ethics.
3. Does potential liability extend to the manufacturer only or could claims extend to corporate executives, employees, and representatives?
Potential liability may also extend to corporate executives, employees and representatives.
4. How can a liability claim be brought?
A manufacturer is held liable for faults in its products and can be required to repair or replace the product as applicable, as well as to compensate for the harm caused by using the relevant products. A liability claim can be brought by way of a regular lawsuit in civil proceedings before a court.
5. What defenses are available?
Product defence includes manufacturing products that should follow the guidelines of the Saudi Standards, Metrology and Quality Organisation.