Your Questions Matter
If your baby suffocated in a crib or other baby product, you need a lawyer. Our attorneys can help you sue the company and get justice.
How do I find out the truth about why my baby suffocated?
A wrongful death lawsuit may be required to find out why a product marketed for use by infants caused the suffocation of your child. The lawsuit allows us to require the company involved to give us copies of all relevant documents, including emails and internal memos. We investigate to find out:
- what kind of testing, if any, was done on the product before it was put on the market;
- whether the company had reports of injuries and deaths associated with use of the product;
- what executives, managers and other employees communicated to each other about safety, design, manufacturing and marketing.
In addition, we look at details of product design and do our own testing. If available, we gather information from outside sources, such as universities, that have participated in testing the safety of the product.
This is just a small part of what we do to get to the truth and hold companies accountable.
How do I know if a product connected to my baby’s suffocation death was recalled?
Baby product recalls are handled by two federal agencies:
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) oversees recalls of medical and food products. A product is considered medical if it is advertised as preventing or relieving a medical condition.
The Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) oversees them for all other products.
Do I still have a case if there was not a recall?
Yes, a product associated with the wrongful death of your baby does not have to be recalled for you to have a case. Our lawyers have handled cases where a manufacturer refused to recall a product that had been connected to baby suffocation deaths.
Why are dangerous infant products sold?
Generally, the FDA and CPSC do not have the authority to recall products, even if the agency has received reports of child deaths linked to the product. Instead, officials use these reports and other data to urge a company to issue a voluntary recall.
In one of our cases, a mother walked in the door to her home and reached down to take her baby out of a carrier. The baby was not breathing. The mother called our law firm and hired us to help. Our attorney found out that 6 other babies had died while in the same model of infant carrier, and that the CPSC knew about it.
Our legal team contacted the CPSC to report the child’s death and discussed the importance of an immediate recall to prevent further deaths. A few weeks later, the product was recalled.
This does not always happen, though. One product had been the likely cause of several baby deaths due to suffocation. There was never a recall, only a product label change adding a warning.
The sad and frustrating truth is that profit often comes before safety.
How much will it cost to hire a lawyer for our family?
Why sue the company that made the product that suffocated my child?
We understand that you are grieving and that your loss has left you feeling empty, and we know a lawsuit is probably the last thing you want to think about. According to our clients, there are 3 reasons why you should consider taking action against the company whose product ended your baby’s life:
- You need answers and a lawsuit is generally the only way to get information from the company that will answer those questions.
- The corporate wrongdoer needs to be held accountable.
- You may prevent this from happening to another family.
You do not need to hire a lawyer at our law firm, but you should seriously consider hiring someone.
Suffocation in a Crib
When an infant suffocates in a crib it is usually due to the bedding, soft toys, a poorly-fitting mattress or a defective crib design. If a defective crib is the cause of the suffocation, the family has a right to seek money damages in a wrongful death lawsuit.
This is one of the biggest hazards prompting crib recalls. It happens most often under circumstances where babies become trapped in a space between the mattress and side rail of the crib, often because hardware fails and the side rail becomes detached.
Drop-side products are the most dangerous and are no longer being manufactured in the United States. These have three fixed sides and the fourth can be raised and lowered. The sides have been known to come loose in a manner that allows an infant’s head or neck to become entrapped between the side rail and headboard.
To prevent your baby from being suffocated while in his or her crib:
- Tighten all nuts, bolts, and screws periodically.
- Whenever crib is moved, be sure all mattress support hangers are secure.
- Check hooks regularly to be sure non are broken or bent. Open hooks may allow the mattress to fall.
- Use a crib which meets Federal Safety Standards and Industry Voluntary Standards for cribs and has a firm tight-fitting mattress.
Baby Slings and Carriers
We won a settlement for a family whose baby died while in a sling. The death was caused by positional asphyxia (suffocation due to the air passageways being closed when the infant’s head is pushed into the chest). This can happen when an infant is forced into this position by the design of the sling. We would recommend the following:
- Use this product according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
- Do not use old baby slings or carriers.
- Before purchasing, check how wide the leg openings are, if there are any, to see if an infant could slip through (it has happened).
- Test to see if the head will be pushed into the chest.
For more information, read: “Baby Sling Lawsuit for Wrongful Death or Brain Damage.”
Beds, Playpens and Infant Sleep Positioners
Never place infants to sleep on an air mattress. Since 2002, CPSC has received reports of 16 tragic deaths. Regular beds are also dangerous.
Defective playpens may not lock securely and may collapse. You should check to make sure yours is secure. If one side collapses, the little can get caught and not be able to breathe.
The FDA and CPSC have warned consumers not to use sleep positioners (see the video below). This video came out in 2010, and as of October 5, 2017, they are still being sold. The FDA issued another warning about the risk of suffocation with sleep positioners in 2017.
Our Lawyers Can Help
Our lawyers help families who have suffered the loss of a child. These are “wrongful death” are caused by companies that sell dangerous products. These wrongdoers need to be held accountable. And it is often lawsuits that force a company to recall a product.
In some cases, a parent is blamed for the death of the child before our lawyers investigate and uncover the truth.