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Ikea pays $46 million in lawsuit involving death of toddler

Ohio residents who own Ikea furniture may be aware of the safety hazards that some of these products are said to pose. Recalls of Ikea furniture as well as injury claims relating to them have not been infrequent. Early in January 2020, a wrongful death lawsuit against Ikea has ended in a $46 million settlement to a California family whose 2-year-old boy died back in 2017 after an Ikea Malm dresser fell on him.

This is considered the largest wrongful death settlement ever awarded in U.S. history over the case of one child. Back in 2016, Ikea settled another wrongful death suit by paying out $50 million to the families of three children also killed by Malm dressers. According to the Ikea website, a total of eight child deaths have been reported involving the company's drawers and chests.

When it settled the 2016 case, Ikea said it would redesign the Malm dresser according to higher safety standards. They not only redesigned the dressers but also recalled the older models. Since 2016, 17.3 million Malm dressers have been recalled, but many more units continue to be used in homes across the U.S. Besides the eight reports of child deaths, there have been nearly 300 reports of incidents leading to injury for 144 children.

Under wrongful death law, the family or other eligible dependents can file a claim against the party that caused, directly or indirectly, the victim's death. A wrongful death case can involve other fields of law like auto accident law or, as with the case above, product liability law. Before moving forward with a case, families are encouraged to see a lawyer. The other side may put up a strong defense, but a lawyer could help ensure that families are compensated for funeral and burial costs, loss of support and more.

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