Los Angeles judge rules that simply offering new, safer toys does not immunize retailers
An effort by Wal-Mart, Mattel and others to immunize themselves from liability for selling dangerous toys by simply offering new, safer toys, was rejected by the California judge in a product iability suit. The ruling was made in a class action suit seeking medical monitoring and other remedies from the corporations responsible for selling toys with toxic levels of lead. Michigan residents have no recourse against retailers for selling defective toys, since "tort reform" has already immunized sellers from most product liability claims. As a result, Michigan retailers have no incentive to identify safe products or manufacturers or to require the manufacturers to insure the safety of their products. The latter requirement is particularly important in cases where defective products are made abroad or in sovereign nations, such as China, where the government owns the factory and won't allow service of process.