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Important Tips for Consumer Products Whistleblowers

Are you aware of fraudulent activity within a consumer products company, or an inherent danger of a product the company is trying to conceal? It is important to know your rights under the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act (CPSIA) so you can safely blow the whistle.

Here are a few tips to keep in mind.

  • Know the applicable legal standard: The CPSIA whistleblower statute has the same elements of retaliation claims as other whistleblower statutes, including protected activity, unlawful discrimination and causal links between the two. You must demonstrate that whistleblower activity contributed to the company’s retaliatory action.

  • Know what types of products are covered: The CPSIA covers consumer products, which is a very broad category of goods. There are some exceptions clearly defined in the law, including tobacco, aircraft and motor vehicles, as well as other types of products that are regulated by other federal laws.

  • Know the statute of limitations: You do have a deadline to file a CPSIA whistleblower retaliation claim. Your complaint should be filed with the Department of Labor within 180 days of the retaliation.

  • Know the damages you could recover: If you have evidence whistleblowing was a contributing factor in the retaliatory actions taken against you, you could be awarded reinstatement, back pay, attorneys’ fees and other compensatory damages (including emotional distress).

  • Work with an attorney: You should retain an attorney as soon as possible if blowing the whistle on wrongdoing, and especially if you then suffer retaliation. They will be able to guide you in the next steps you should take with your case.

For more information about consumer products whistleblowing and whistleblower retaliation suits, contact an experienced attorney at Kardell Law Group.

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In his new book, "Standing Up to China: How a Whistleblower Risked Everything for His Country," former client & Author, Ashley Yablon, quotes Attorney Steve Kardell about Whistelblower Law.
  • "Steve Kardell was terrific in representing me in some very adversarial discussions with Citigroup and also later represented me in my testimony before the Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission."  -Richard Bowen, Citigroup Whistleblower

  • "Incredible knowledge of employee related concerns and equally brilliant knowledge of health care regulations, standards of practice. I would recommend this firm to anyone."  -V.B.

  • "Reaching out to Steve Kardell was the best decision I made. His ability to provide immediate insight and direction was very powerful, and a huge relief during a very stressful time period. For anyone struggling with a whistleblower situation, I would highly recommend at least speaking with Steve. After a 10 minute call with him, I had a better understanding of what I was dealing with. Even better, he gave me some immediate hope. In the end Steve did a better job than I thought was possible. Steve was able to get in contact with people in my organization, that I didn’t have access to. Because of his years of experience, he already has contacts in many organizations in Dallas. The entire situation was handled peacefully. I was impressed by his ability to “keep the peace”–rather than creating a battle with the organization. The reason I didn’t reach out to a lawyer initially, was because I thought it would mean an immediate end to any hope of a positive relationship with the company. Steve was able to address my concerns, and in the end I was able to continue to work for them."  -KS

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