For many companies, products they proudly supply to consumers are at the core of their businesses. When a product unexpectedly causes harm to a consumer, it is important that companies are able to promptly prevent harm to consumers, comply with any related regulatory requirements and help preserve what the company may have worked hard to build.
A company may become aware of an unexpected problem with one of its products a number of different ways, including through customer complaints or claims, news coverage or regulatory agencies such as
the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission or the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. A number of causes can account for a potential problem with a product. Possible problems may be attributed to a design defect, manufacturing defect, misbranding or mislabeling, as well as several other types of issues.
Consumers may be warned of potentially dangerous products through market withdrawals, safety alerts and product recalls. Product recalls allow companies to protect customers from harm, minimize the costs of litigation and preserve the reputation the company may have built over time. There are a number of important factors to consider when a company makes a determination to recall a product and notification requirements may be required in some circumstances.
When a problem with a product arises, it is important to address it promptly; a failure to do so can increase the likelihood of product liability lawsuits, as well as additional actions that are possible from regulatory agencies. In addition to liability to consumers, a company may also face liability to third parties following a problem with a product. To help minimize harm to consumers and the liability of the company, it is essential for businesses in any one of many consumer products industries to know how to promptly respond to problems associated with their products.