Baby bassinets are usually utilized during the first few months of infancy as a place for newborns to nap. They are smaller than cribs and parallel to cradles, with some minor cosmetic and functional distinctions. For example, bassinets usually come with beddings and a protective cover over the top. Baby bassinets can occasionally fulfill different roles, such as swinging or rocking the baby.
Like other baby products, baby bassinets can be associated with some health and injury hazards for the baby. These can include:
- Wounds caused by a fall from the bassinet
- Mishaps involving the bassinet collapsing or breaking
- Injuries related to suffocation
- Injuries caused by sharp edges or points
- Health hazards involving toxic chemicals such as lead
Some bassinets are also associated with “drop-side” injuries. Some bassinets are fitted with “drop-side” panels on the side, moving up and down, permitting easy access to the baby. The panels can get stuck or fall in some circumstances, causing injury or circumstances where the baby is ensnared underneath the panel.
Who Can Be Held Liable for Baby Bassinet Injuries or Accidents?
In many cases, a bassinet injury directly results from a defect with the product. For example, there may be a defect in the legs’ design, causing it to fall during use. Or, there may be a fault with the materials used in the product, causing it to expose the baby to harmful chemicals. In such circumstances, the manufacturer of the hazardous product might be held responsible for injuries under a defective product theory of law.
In other instances, a distributor or retailer might be held responsible if they knowingly distribute or sell products that have already been subjected to a baby bassinet recall.
What Is Product Liability?
A products liability claim involves the manufacturer or seller of a product being held liable for putting a defective product into the stream of commerce. Any party liable for any part of the product’s manufacture could be held responsible for any damages caused by the defect, just as any seller may also be held accountable.
Three types of defects could result in liability to one or all parties involved in the manufacture and sale of the product. They are:
- Design Defects: Design defects are defects in the design of the product. No matter how satisfactorily the product is manufactured, and no matter how exhaustively a customer is warned about the risks associated with the product, if the design is defective, it is considered to be intrinsically defective;
- Manufacturing Defects: A manufacturing defect presents when the manufacturer puts the product together in such a way that makes the resulting product dangerous; and
- Defective Warnings: Some otherwise perfect products may still result in a product liability suit if there is an inadequate warning regarding any dangers associated with the product. Such claims may also include failing to properly instruct a consumer on safely and effectively using the product.
There are three legal theories under which a product’s liability claim may be brought. These include negligence, strict liability, and breach of warranty of fitness. These theories typically vary depending on which state’s law is relevant. As there are no federal products liability laws, each state creates laws and regulations pertinent to product liability.
However, strict liability cases are significant for a seller, as they impact sellers significantly. This is because a seller may be held responsible for the defect just because the product was defective regardless of any other action that the seller took. Basically, all that the injured consumer must establish in a strict liability case is that:
- They were injured;
- They were injured by the product; and
- The injurious product was sold by the seller.
It does not matter how cautious the seller was, nor how much the seller forewarned about the product. They could still be held accountable.
What Is a Product Recall?
A product recall ensues when most of a specific product becomes hazardous to use. Either a government agency or the product manufacturer forewarns the public, suggesting that they take a particular action to ensure their protection while using the product. The Consumer Product Safety Act shields the clients from exposure to products that create an unreasonable threat of injury to the user.
Product recalls provide a way for manufacturers or businesses to pull the product causing the concern or injury while also offering a remedy for the injured party. The government plays a substantial part in administering this procedure and mandates some product recalls. They confirm that the products with defective designs are directly recalled; it is crucial to review government websites often to make sure that any product you have recently bought is not on the recall list.
Just as the laws regarding product liability vary from state to state, the regulations associated with product recalls vary among the different government agencies. The following government agencies can demand a product recall:
- The Consumer Product Safety Commission;
- The Food and Drug Administration;
- The Food Safety and Inspection Services;
- The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration;
- The Coast Guard; and
- The Environmental Protection Agency.
What Are the Legal Remedies for a Baby Bassinet Injury Lawsuit?
Baby bassinet injuries can be severe and may need legal action to settle any conflicts. The standard remedy will be a compensatory damages award in these injury lawsuits. The damages may cover medical costs, hospital bills, surgery expenses, pain and suffering, and other losses. If wrongful death is an issue, additional damages may also apply.
In addition to a recall, class action lawsuits can also result if the same bassinet product injures many consumers.
What Is an Infant Cradle Swing Injury?
Infant cradle swings are appliances that let a baby be rocked back and forth to help them sleep. Cradle swings frequently utilize mechanical or electric power to provide the rocking motion.
Infant cradle swings have been associated with different injury risks due to:
- The cradle seat falling
- The entire unit tipping over
- Movable parts failing and causing injury
- Malfunctions with electronic or other power-assisted rocking components
Infant cradle swings can be unsafe because there is a tendency for the parent to leave the baby while the automatic swinging mechanism continues to work.
Who Can Be Held Responsible for Infant Cradle Swing Injuries?
Different parties can be held responsible for an infant cradle swing injury. In many examples, the manufacturer or designer of an infant cradle swing can be held responsible if there is a defect or product liability problem.
Are There Any Legal Remedies for Infant Cradle Swing Injuries?
The damages awarded may differ according to several elements, including:
- State personal injury laws
- The extent of the injuries involved
- Whether there were any intervening factors in the injury
Also, infant cradle swings can be subject to a product recall if many products or clients are affected by the same problem in many circumstances.
Do I Need a Lawyer for Representation in a Baby Bassinet Injury Lawsuit?
Baby bassinet injuries can involve some pretty complicated laws. It may be in your best interests to hire a class action lawyer in your area if you need help with a lawsuit. Your lawyer will be able to answer your questions and steer you through the process.