| HBS Case Collection
(Revised April 2002)
Ginzel et al v. Kolcraft Enterprises et al (A)
Examines the wrongful death lawsuit brought by the family of an infant who died after a portable crib collapsed. The manufacturer, Kolcraft, licensed the Playskool brand name from the co-defendant, Hasbro Industries. Raises difficult questions about what the two companies should do now, after a series of tragic deaths--and after apparently complying with regulatory requirements governing product recall. Also raises provocative questions about the appropriateness of settlements in wrongful-death suits, corporate responsibility to ensure product safety, and pressures of national media attention on corporate actions. Though the circumstances here are particularly heart-breaking, managers often have to deal with lawsuits that are value-laden and have high emotional content, such as employment discrimination or sexual harassment claims, for example, or environmental and regulatory disputes. The kinds of decisions and tensions that a manager faces in such instances surely have much in common with the issues raised.
Corporate Social Responsibility and Impact;
Lawsuits and Litigation;
Brands and Branding;
Consumer Products Industry;