As society advances in areas such as technology and manufacturing, so do the toys we buy for our children. Nowadays, many objects come with pieces that are either small enough for a child to fit in their mouth or large enough to cause bodily harm.
With the holiday season just around the corner, children may be receiving toys with surprising hazards. What can you do to ensure your child’s safety? What happens if your family is unlucky enough to receive a defective item?
1. Check for Warning Labels
California product liability laws make it mandatory for all manufacturers, sellers, and distributors to provide instructions and warnings for their products. For example, say your child receives a product that contains pieces small enough to swallow. There needs to be a choking hazard warning on the box or in the instructions to make you aware of the danger. A warning label can help ensure a product is used for it’s intended purpose. Every toy should come with clearly stated cautionary suggestions.
2. Look for Design Issues
If a toy injures your child even after you have read the instructions and the child was playing with it safely, your next step is to check the item for design flaws. Let’s say your child is playing with a toy that has a motorized component that malfunctions, causing it to get stuck in your child’s hair. Because the product’s design/function is defective and dangerous, you likely have grounds for a product liability suit.
3. Be Aware of Manufacturing Defects
When a large company mass-produces a toy, there should be someone (or multiple people) checking the product for quality control and safety. Sometimes an item defect may not be known during an inspection and can end up in the hands of a consumer. When this happens, your child could be the recipient of a defective toy, which means you would have grounds for a liability suit. In such cases, you do not have to prove the supplier was negligent; you merely have to prove the product was defective and led to injury.
4. Gather Evidence
If anyone in your family is injured as a result of one of the factors listed above, you should gather evidence in case you decide to take legal action.
It is advised that you:
- keep the product;
- seek medical attention for the injured party;
- take pictures of the product and the injuries it caused;
- write a detailed account of the incident;
- keep all information you have on the product (packaging, instructions, receipt, warning label, etc.);
- if the product came from a third party, request information about the purchase; and
- keep a record of all financial losses the product caused.
California’s statute of limitations allows a party to make a legal claim against a company up to 2 years after the discovery of injury.
A Product Liability Attorney You Can Count On
If anyone in your family is injured by a product they received as a gift this holiday season, our firm can help. Our attorney will aggressively fight for your rights and seek full compensation for any pain and suffering you may have experienced as a result.
Call our firm today at (916) 778-3228 or contact us online for your case evaluation.