Best Buy to Pay Civil Penalty, Implement Internal Compliance Program for Recalled Products

The retailer was charged with distributing and selling recalled products

Best Buy to Pay Civil Penalty, Implement Internal Compliance Program for Recalled Products
Image: NCCC
October 4, 2016

Best Buy has agreed to pay a $3.8 million civil penalty to the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) for the distribution and sale of previously-recalled products.

It is against federal law to sale, offer for sale, or distribute in commerce a product that had been subject to voluntary corrective action publicly announced by, and taken after consulting with, the CPSC, e.g. a recall.

The agreement settles charges levied against the retailer claiming that it knowingly sold and distributed 16 different recalled products from 2010 through 2015. The CPSC alleged that the retailer did not carry out proper procedures to correctly identify, quarantine, and prevent selling recalled products across its supply channels. The agency also claimed that the retailer sometimes did not permanently block product codes because of incorrect information indicating that the affected product was not present in inventory. In other cases, the codes were reactivated before they should have been and, in a few cases, were even overridden.

Best Buy continued to sell recalled products even after informing the agency that it had taken action to reduce the risk that such products would be sold.

The retailer sold roughly 600 affected products between September 2010 and October 2015. The retailer and the CPSC jointly re-announced recalls on July 24, 2014, of 10 products Best Buy had been selling after the original recall announcement. For a full list of recalled items, see the official CPSC release.

As well as paying the civil penalty, Best Buy has agreed to implement an internal compliance program designed to ensure that it will comply with the Consumer Product Safety Act, including a program for appropriately disposing of items that have been recalled. Best Buy has also agreed to carry out an internal controls and procedures system.

The agreement of Best Buy to settle this case is not an admission of the CPSC's charges.