An item can occasionally make its way to market that poses a significant threat to people who use it. This isn’t done through any form of malicious intent. Mistakes happen. Perhaps there’s an unforeseen side effect or a defect in the manufacturing of the item.
These situations will lead the company responsible for introducing the product to issue a recall. And if you’ve been using a recalled item, there are some steps you need to take to ensure your personal safety.
There are also some steps that will give you a better chance at receiving compensation for your negative experience with the help of a product recall attorney.
Here’s what you should do if you find out you’ve been using a recalled product:
- Stop Using the Product
- Seek Medical Assistance, If Necessary
- Keep the Product in a Safe Place
- Find All Documentation
- What if You’ve Been Injured by a Product That Hasn’t Been Recalled?
- Contact a Product Recall Attorney
Stop Using the Product
The most immediate step you can take is to stop using the product, even if you haven’t noticed any negative effects from using it. Set it aside and make sure you are focused on your personal health.
Seek Medical Assistance, If Necessary
Your health should always be the top concern. All other considerations can be figured out after you are safe.
Call your doctor if the item in question is a pharmaceutical. Go to the hospital if you’ve received a physical injury from a faulty product. There is no benefit in trying to document your injuries or doing anything besides what is best for your physical health.
Keep the Product in a Safe Place
It might be tempting to get rid of the product to avoid the possibility of it harming anyone else, but you should hold onto it. Place it in an area that is out of reach for small children and alert everyone in your household to avoid it.
This will come in handy if you decide to enlist the help of a product recall attorney. The state of the product will help prove your claim that the problem started as a result of something that happened before it came into your possession.
This is a critical component to a product liability claim. The ability to prove the negative outcome wasn’t caused by personal misuse of the item helps in determining where the problem occurred between production and personal use.
Find All Documentation
You need to be able to prove where you purchased the product and when. The company that produced the product isn’t the only entity that can be deemed at-fault in these situations.
Distributors that send out faulty products — either accidentally or knowingly — can also occasionally be found to share the blame.
Compile all receipts, packaging, and any other documents that provide a trail between purchasing the product and bringing it home.
Companies will issue a recall notice that include instructions on what you can do moving forward. Consult this information for additional resources. And if you know your product has been recalled but haven't received a notice, you can visit the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commision and search for your product.
What if You’ve Been Injured by a Product That Hasn’t Been Recalled?
The unfortunate truth is that it can take a little while for a faulty product to be recalled. But that doesn’t mean your injury as a result of properly using a purchased item is your fault.
A dangerous item needs to be removed from the shelves before it injures other people. The first step to making this happen is to lodge a complaint.
Take all of the documentation you’ve gathered and make copies. Write a letter explaining where you bought the product, when you bought it, and what your experience was with it. You should be able to find the contact information for the company that produced the item on their website. Send them the copies of your documentation as well as this detailed letter.
You can also send a complaint to the proper governmental protection agency. This includes the Better Business Bureau (BBB) and econsumer.gov (for online purchases).
It might take these agencies some time to take action, but it’s still a good idea to file a complaint with them. It will be kept on file and compiled with similar complaints against the company.
Contact a Product Recall Attorney
Bart Durham Injury Law has been representing people in product injury cases for years. We believe that you deserve to be compensated for sustaining injuries through no fault of your own.
We’ve worked on many high-profile product recall cases and know how to fight on your behalf.