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IKEA Deaths Show That Filling out Product Warranty Cards Is No Waste of Time

Posted on in Vehicle Recalls

2017 IKEA Recall Update – IKEA has recalled their Malm style chests and dressers after an eighth child was killed by one of them. Contact IKEA to resolve any issues with their recalled products.

Do you know that manufacturer's warranty card that falls out of the box of a new purchase, along with all those other pieces of paper? The biggest reason to fill it out and send it back is it's how the company is able to contact you if the product has been recalled for a safety reason.

For example, just last year, IKEA recalled 29 million dressers after four children died when the dressers toppled over on them. Nearly one year later, fewer than 500,000 customers have responded to the recall to either get a refund or to be sent special screws to anchor the dresser to the wall. If you had bought one of these dressers and sent back the card, IKEA would have notified you as soon as the danger was identified. IKEA still is trying to reach millions of people who bought this dresser and probably don't know that it carries an unacceptably high risk of falling over unless anchored to the wall.

Dangerous Product Cases Highlight Importance

The U.S. agency that assesses the hazards of everyday consumer goods, like TVs and toys, is the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC). The CPC issues about 400 consumer product recalls each year. The agency takes an especially hard look at products from China and other overseas countries that frequently try to skirt U.S. product safety laws. Children's toys coated in lead paint are a good example.

I've had personal experiences with importers ignoring U.S. laws in the cases of the unsafe products I've handled. One involved children who were horribly burned by a cigarette lighter decorated in cartoons. The lighters were made in China and imported into the U.S. to sell. It's against the law in this country to sell dangerous products that are designed to attract children. We secured a sizable settlement for the children – one that continues to provide the care they need.

Consumer product lawsuits make importers and others pay attention to U.S. laws. They also help alert the CPSC to products that have injured or killed. For example, thanks to a crusading young mother and our firm, the lawsuit we filed against a major manufacturer over a defective seatbelt buckle resulted not only in a substantial jury verdict for our client, but the manufacturer soon changed the buckle's design, making millions of cars safer.

3 Tips to Protect Yourself from Defective Products

To see if a product you own has been recalled for a safety reason:

  • Go to www.cpsc.gov. You can also go to www.recalls.gov for recalls initiated by other agencies, like the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA), which oversees vehicle and motorcycle recalls
  • Be wary when buying items directly from overseas, like China
  • Be very cautious of resale websites. While it is illegal to sell a recalled product, unscrupulous sellers often try it. Check to see if the product has been recalled before buying
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