How to Keep Defective Products from Ruining the Holidays
The holidays aren't that far away and there is a good chance you are getting a jump on your Christmas shopping. Naturally, you want everyone to have a fun and safe holiday. Following these guidelines will help ensure you don't bring any defective products home from the store.
Search for Recalls
The Consumer Product Safety Commission, Food and Drug Administration, and National Highway Traffic Safety Administration maintain active lists of current recalls. These sites are helpful if you are buying a laptop, cell phone, little robot, basket of fruit, car parts, or a brand new car. Always check the appropriate recall list before making a purchase. You should never purchase a product that is under recall. Further, you should be leery of purchasing from a brand that has a history of design or manufacturing problems.
Read the Reviews
The latest gadgets and hottest toys almost always have reviews you can search online. These reviews provide vital information about product quality and durability. They also contain clues that a product may pose a health and safety hazard. It can take months for a formal recall to come about, so these reviews provide early warning that a product may not be safe. Such was the case with Samsung cell phones, laptops, and hoverboards that had problems with lithium ion batteries that could overheat and start fires.
Inspect the Toy Before Gifting
Visually inspect any gift prior to wrapping it up and gifting it to the recipient. Test the toy or item to ensure that it functions properly. Make sure it is free of defects that can spark a fire, cause a cut, or otherwise pose a risk to the health and safety of family members, pets, etc.
If you detect a risk, take the item back to the store and collect a refund. If you confirm a risk (i.e. witnessed a battery smoking, suffered lacerations, experienced food poisoning, had a crash, etc.) be certain to report these hazards to the appropriate regulatory agency. This may be the CPSC, FDA, or NHTSA.
We invite you to contact Welmaker Law Firm at (726) 666-6666 for more information about our legal experience. It's our pleasure to answer your questions and help you determine what course to pursue when a defective product causes property damage, personal injury, or wrongful death.