Purchasing an Existing Business & Product Safety Compliance

What do I do for product safety compliance when I've purchased an existing business?
Written by Misty Henry
Updated 4 months ago

You're thinking about purchasing an existing product-based business, or maybe you've already purchased the business, but now what do you do with the product?

The very first thing to do is ask yourself what kind of product it is. More specifically, is it something that is specifically regulated like furniture or children's products? If no, then you're likely to be able to continue on with selling the products.

If yes, then it's time to figure out what kind of regulations these are supposed to have and request all existing information regarding the regulatory compliance for each product.  Ask for:

- Test Reports
- Certificates of Compliance / Compliance Declaration Technical Package
- Written Testing Plans
- Labeling templates
- Supplier Lists & contact information
- History of safety issues/complaints/reports (may include information regarding CPSC's SaferProducts.gov portal)
- Creation & Tracking history (should include dates, batch codes, etc.)

Basically, anything that plays into being able to successfully continue to provide compliant products through proper labeling and creating a valid Certificate of Compliance in the future is important.

Previous and future production is now your responsibilty. If there is anything amiss for already made/ready-to-sell product, you need to remove it from availability until that error is fixed. No product should be available for sale until it is compliant.

Purchasing an existing business with existing product can be a headache, but once you get done wading through the stuff already done (or not done) and get your own system & new habit created, this will be significantly easier for the future.

Links to Agency Resources

- Federal Trade Commission: What is the required labeling for products?, Clothing care information, FTC Main Page
- Customers & Border Protection: CBP Main Page, Country of origin markings
- Consumer Product Safety Commission: CPSC Main Page, Tracking Label

More Assistance

Join my free Facebook group, US Product Safety Compliance.
The Makers Community membership.
Free Checklist.
Free basic product safety course.

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