A product liability claim against Fisher-Price can be based on negligence, strict liability, or breach of warranty of fitness depending on the jurisdiction where the claim is based.
Product liability is generally considered a strict liability offense. Strict liability wrongs do not depend on the degree of carefulness by the defendant. Translated to products liability terms, a defendant is liable when it is shown that the product is defective.
It is irrelevant whether the manufacturer or supplier exercised great care; if there is a defect in the product that causes harm, the manufacturer and/or supplier will be liable for it. In the case of a lawsuit involving a Fisher-Price product, our law firm would investigate to determine what companies in addition to Fisher-Price could be held liable. It is almost always in the injured person’s best interests to have multiple defendents (people being sued for money damages).
From the moment we take a product liability case, we consider the issue of damages (money/compensation for the injured person and his or her family). People injured by defective products are entitled to receive money damages for such things as pain and suffering, medical bills, lost wages, loss of earning capacity, disability and disfigurement, emotional distress and, in some cases, loss of enjoyment of life.
High Chair Recall Due to Report of Skull Fracture
Fisher-Price and the the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) have received a report of one child falling out of a Fisher-Price 3-in-1 high chair. In response, on March 4, 2009, the company voluntarily recalled about 24,000 of these products. This 2009 recall involves the 3-in-1 High Chair to Booster™, which converts from a high chair to a toddler booster seat. It includes a removable tray, height adjustment and folds for storage. The product number (P5369) is printed on the side of the seat, on a label on the seat pad, and on the product’s packaging.
Fisher-Price Fined $975,000
In March of 2007, Fisher-Price Inc., of East Aurora, N.Y., agreed to pay a $975,000 civil penalty for failing to report to the government that a nail fastener in the Little People® Animal Sounds Farm could separate from the toy and pose a serious choking or aspiration hazard to young children.
About 67,000 Little People® Animal Sounds Farms were sold nationwide from June 2002 through July 2002.
- In September 2002, the company received its first report of a nail fastener coming loose from one of the Little People Farm barn’s stall doors. Over the next two months, it received nine additional reports, including one case of a child placing the nail fastener in her mouth.
- By February 2003, the company had received two reports of parents concerned that this problem posed a choking hazard to children and a report of a December 30, 2002 incident in which a 14-month old child aspirated a nail fastener into his lung. The child was taken to the hospital and underwent an emergency surgical procedure to have the metal nail fastener removed.
- It was not until March 2003 that the company reported the safety hazard with the Little People® Animal Farm to the Commission. By that time, it was aware of at least 33 reports in which the nail fastener came loose from the stall doors. These included four reports of children who put the metal nail fastener in their mouths and the one case of the child who aspirated the nail fastener.
Federal law requires firms to report to CPSC immediately (within 24 hours) after obtaining information reasonably supporting the conclusion that a product contains a defect which could create a substantial risk of injury to the public, presents an unreasonable risk of serious injury or death, or violates a federal safety standard.
In April 2003, CPSC and Fisher-Price announced the recall of the Little People® Animal Sounds Farms and recommended that consumers take the toy away from young children immediately.
In agreeing to settle the matter, Fisher-Price Inc. denies CPSC’s allegations that the company knowingly violated the law.
Prior to the loss of quorum, the Commission delegated authority to the Office of Compliance and Field Operations to settle this matter with Fisher-Price before March 1, 2007.
Infant Musical Toy Chair
On January 18, 2006, the CPSC announced a recall of about 614,000 Laugh & Learn™ Musical Learning Chairs.™ A child can become lodged between the seatback and side table of the chair, possibly leading to an entrapment of the neck. This can pose a strangulation hazard to young children. To date, there have been three reports of young children getting their necks lodged between the seatback and the side table of the toy, including one report of a child receiving a welt on the neck.