New Rules Open Garage Sale Sellers To Being Sued

07.08.09 | FL News Team

Failure to follow certain rules when selling items at a garage sale or online could get you sued. The Consumer Product Safety Commission is trying to get the word out about a federal law enacted last year. The rule makes it illegal to sell recalled products. The agency admits the law isn't likely to be enforced at the individual driveway or online listing level but "The Wall Street Journal" quotes agency spokesman Scott Wolfson as saying "why pass (questionable goods) on to another family that could be harmed." He says "it doesn't take much work to know that a product was recalled."


Listings on Craigslist by people trying to turn unused items into cash have soared by 60-percent in the past year. Some of those items, like lead encrusted toys and defective cribs could put children at risk. If someone is injured by a recalled item they've purchased online they could, theoretically, sue the seller. There are several Internet sites that can help sellers discover whether items are on a recall list. allows searches by product type and even by hazard. lists every recall ever issued by the Consumer Product Safety Commission and five other federal agencies.