There are many types of product liability claims possible, and in several areas these kinds of claims have gone through an evolution over time. One great example here is choking hazards present within children’s toys, an area that’s gone through several changes over the years to lead to the current precedent.
At the offices of John D. Halepaska, we’re proud to offer high-quality services within the field of product liability law for any of our clients. If you’re the parent of a child who has bought any kind of toy or game for them, whether we’re talking simple Legos and building blocks or more complex board games, chances are you’ve seen a warning label on the product that states it can be a potential choking hazard. But in some cases, toys may lack these warnings, or the warnings may not be prominent enough to be considered effective. Let’s go over how these labels came to be commonplace to begin with, some categories for choking hazards, and how you can file a claim if your child has been injured or even killed due to a choking hazard.
History and Modern Manufacturer Warning Requirements
In previous generations, you might be surprised to learn that these kinds of warning labels and other precautions were not so common. Even just a few decades ago, parents could buy toys for their kids that contained numerous choking hazards, but had no warning or precautionary statement whatsoever.
Over time, however, enough accidents took place that the federal government took action. They now have a set of requirements for all child toys that may include even a minor choking hazard, standards that both manufacturers and distributors of these toys must abide by.
Product Categories and Federal Law
Getting a bit more specific, the group that determines these warnings and the products that require them is called the US Consumer Products Safety Commission. This body is governed by two legal documents: The Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act of 2008, and the Federal Hazardous Substances Act.
The most important group addressed by these two sets of regulations are children under the age of three, those at by far the highest risk of ingesting small items and potentially choking. There are also general warnings required for products meant for older consumers. All of these warnings are required across manufacturers, suppliers and product retailers alike. Failure to provide these warnings can lead to a company being held liable if a choking accident takes place.
Filing a Claim
While these acts listed above and related government agencies do a generally good job of regulating toys in the US market, it’s still possible for some to slip through the cracks. If you’re the parent of a child who has sustained any injury through choking on a toy without proper warnings, contact our offices right away to learn if you might have a claim.
For more on child choking hazards and product liability, or to learn about any of our personal injury attorney services, speak to the staff at the offices of John D. Halepaska today.