Can the CEO of a food distributor company be held personally liable in a personal injury suit due to a defective product?

Asked over 1 year ago - New York, NY

- It cannot be proven that the CEO had prior knowledge of the product's defects.
- The defect is caused by the manufacturer.

Attorney answers (4)

  1. Joseph Jonathan Brophy

    Contributor Level 20

    5

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . If the company is a corporation, the CEO would not be personally liable except in very rare and extraordinary circumstances.

    Any opinions stated in response to Avvo questions are based upon the facts stated in the question. Responses to... more
  2. Jacob W Pillsbury

    Contributor Level 11

    4

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . If the distributor is an LLC, he or she is very unlikely to be held personally liable. However, there are some instances where an officer or owner of a corporation can be held liable for tortious actions of the company. I suggest that the CEO seek legal counsel with more specific facts to protect from possible exposure.

    This answer is intended to be used for general purposes only; it does not create an attorney-client relationship.
  3. Christian K. Lassen II

    Pro

    Contributor Level 20

    4

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . Not likely

  4. Jonathan Craig Reed

    Pro

    Contributor Level 16

    Answered . As a general rule, one of the legal advantages of a corporation as opposed to a partnership or sole proprietorship is that owners and executives of the corporation can only be held liable for their own acts, not the acts of their employees. This is what is meant by the "corporate shield."

Related Topics

Sole proprietorship small business

A sole proprietorship is a business owned and operated by one person in which there is no legal distinction between the business and owner.

Product liability and personal injury

Product liability is the legal responsibility manufacturers and sellers have if a product they sell is defective and causes injury.

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