Product liability claims involving consumer products are always unfortunate. When these cases involve children who are harmed by dangerous toy defects, it is simply tragic. Parents purchase products for their children believing them to be safe and effective. Unfortunately, what may seem like a minor defect to a manufacturer could have life-altering consequences for consumers.
If you are reading this article, chances are you are researching what to do if your child has injured by a defective toy or other product. At Kherkher Garcia, LLP, we want you to know that you are in the right place. Our product liability attorneys can help you and your family protect your rights and get the compensation your child and family deserves.
Below, we provide helpful information about toy defects, injuries, and how you can get help pursuing justice. If you have questions or need a case evaluation, don’t hesitate to contact us right now.
What are the Most Common Dangerous Toy Defects?
There are many potential toy defects that can make the products dangerous for children. Some of the most common toy defects include:
Small parts that can pose a choking hazard. Toys that are intended for children under the age of three should not contain any small parts that could fit entirely into a child’s mouth. This includes small balls, buttons, beads, and other small objects.
Loose or detachable parts that could be a choking hazard. Toys should not have any loose or detachable parts that could come off and be a choking hazard. This includes small wheels, gears, and other small objects.
Sharp edges or points that can cause cuts or lacerations. Toys should not have any sharp edges or points that could cause injury to a child. This includes toys with sharp plastic, metal, or glass pieces.
Toys that contain toxic chemicals. Toys should not contain any toxic chemicals that could be harmful to children if they are ingested or absorbed through the skin. This includes lead, cadmium, and other heavy metals.
Toys should be appropriate for the age of the child who will be playing with them. Toys that are too advanced or too dangerous for a child’s age could lead to injury.
It is important to inspect toys carefully before giving them to children to make sure that they are safe. If you see any defects, do not give the toy to the child. You should also report the defect to the manufacturer so that they can take steps to correct it.
Most Common Injuries from Defective Toys
Defective toys can pose a variety of risks to children, and injuries can range from minor cuts and bruises to more serious injuries such as fractures, burns, and head trauma. Some of the most common injuries related to defective toys include:
- Choking: Small parts or pieces of toys can easily come loose and become a choking hazard, particularly for young children.
- Suffocation: Children’s products that are heavy, have zippers, or are inappropriate for their age can lead to improper use. Suffocation is a risk with certain blankets, pillows, inclined sleepers, and stuffed animals.
- Strangulation: Toys with long cords or strings can pose a strangulation hazard if they become wrapped around a child’s neck.
- Cuts and Lacerations: Sharp edges or broken pieces of toys can cause cuts and lacerations that may require medical attention.
- Burns: Toy defects that inappropriately generate heat or contain flammable materials can cause burns and other thermal injuries.
- Eye Injuries: Toys that shoot projectiles or have sharp edges can cause eye injuries, including corneal abrasions and retinal detachments.
- Fractures and Dislocations: Toys that are poorly designed or made with substandard materials can break or collapse, causing fractures, dislocations, and other orthopedic injuries.
- Head Trauma: Toys that are thrown, swung, or otherwise used in a manner that is inconsistent with their intended use can cause head trauma and traumatic brain injury.
It is important for parents to carefully inspect toys before giving them to children and to follow all safety guidelines and age recommendations provided by the manufacturer. If you suspect that a toy has caused an injury, you should seek medical attention and report the incident to the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC).
Can I Sue a Defective Toy Manufacturer?
Yes! If a product you purchased for your child has caused them harm, you can sue the toy manufacturer. Child injuries from toy defects fall under product liability law. These cases can be complex, which is why it is recommended to speak with a product liability attorney before attempting to file a lawsuit.
Defective Toy Product Liability Claims
Defective toy product liability claims are legal actions taken against the manufacturer, distributor, or retailer of a toy that has caused injury or harm to a child due to a defect or design flaw. The legal theory behind these claims is that the responsible party failed to fulfill their duty to provide a safe product for the intended use.
To establish a defective toy product liability claim, you (the Plaintiff) must show that:
- The toy was defective or dangerous in some way, either due to a manufacturing defect, design defect, or inadequate warning or labeling.
- The defect caused the child’s injury or harm.
- Your child was using the toy in a reasonably foreseeable manner when the injury occurred.
- The responsible party, whether it be the manufacturer, distributor, or retailer, failed to exercise reasonable care in the design, manufacture, distribution, or sale of the toy.
There are three main types of defective toy product liability claims:
- Manufacturing Defect: This type of claim arises when the toy was improperly manufactured, resulting in a defect that made the toy dangerous. For example, a toy with a small part that became dislodged during the manufacturing process, posing a choking hazard to young children.
- Design Defect: This type of claim arises when the toy was designed in a way that made it inherently dangerous or defective, regardless of how it was manufactured. For example, a toy with sharp edges or a projectile that is prone to causing eye injuries.
- Failure to Warn: This type of claim arises when the toy is dangerous, but the manufacturer failed to provide adequate warning or labeling to alert parents or caregivers to the potential hazards. For example, a toy that contains small parts that could be a choking hazard but does not have appropriate warning labels or age recommendations.
If a defective toy product liability claim is successful, you may be entitled to compensation for the harm your child and family has suffered.
What Damages are Available in Product Liability Claims?
In product liability claims, damages refer to the compensation that you may be eligible to receive from the party responsible for the injury. The damages that are available in defective toy claims may vary depending on the specific circumstances of the case. However, generally, the following damages may be recoverable:
- Medical Expenses: This includes the cost of hospitalization, doctor’s visits, medication, rehabilitation, and any other expenses related to your child’s medical treatment.
- Lost Income: If your child is injured by a toy defect and you are unable to work while they recover, you may be able to recover damages for lost income.
- Pain and Suffering: This includes compensation for physical and emotional pain, as well as the loss of enjoyment of life resulting from the injury.
- Punitive Damages: In some cases, the court may award punitive damages to punish the defendant for their egregious conduct or to deter others from engaging in similar conduct.
It is important to note that the availability and amount of damages in product liability claims can vary widely depending on the specific facts of the case. It is always advisable to consult with an experienced product liability attorney to understand the potential damages that may be available in your particular case.
Get Help if Your Child is Injured Due to a Defective Toy
If your child is injured due to a defective toy or other children’s product, it is important to get legal advice right away. As the Plaintiff, you have the burden of proving the claims you make when filing a product liability lawsuit. The product liability attorneys at Kherkher Garcia can help.
Our attorneys have more than 30 years of experience in personal injury law, including fighting for victims’ rights against product manufacturers. Product liability claims are complex, but our team has the experience and resources that you need to obtain justice and maximum compensation.
Get started with the legal help you need by calling Kherkher Garcia at 713-333-1030, or by completing our online contact form. Our consultations are 100% free.