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Consumer letter of complaint: Product safety

Product safety is a constant source of complaint. Dangerous appliances and health hazards are the basic grounds for complaints. Ironically, some consumers complaints have exposed major issues for manufacturers that produce their goods under license in China and elsewhere.

How to make an effective consumer complaint about product safety

Most countries have a consumer watchdog or agency to which you can complain about product safety. Some countries have both federal and state or provincial agencies.

Find out which agency can deal with your complaint.

Ring the agency and ask for information about their complaints procedures.

Ask the agency what information they require to investigate your complaint.

The agency will require a written complaint in virtually all cases.

Your letter of complaint must:

  • Fully describe the product
  • State when and where the product was purchased
  • Fully describe the nature of the risks and safety issues
  • Indicate what injuries, if any, were suffered
  • State what information you've received from the merchant regarding your complaint.

Supporting information and documentation

You will be required to provide copies (NOT originals) of at least some relevant documents related to the case. Ask the agency for clarification, if you're not sure whether they require doctor's letters, etc.

In many cases, the agency will only require contact details for other parties to confirm information.

This example is of a fully documented consumer complaint regarding an unsafe children's toy.


(Personal letterhead)



Dear Sir or Madam:

Product safety complaint, children's toys

We would like to make a formal complaint about a dangerous remote control toy which caused injuries to our 8 year old child:

Product details:

Product name:       Killer Dinosaur
Manufacturer:        Kiddie Remotes Inc. USA
Date of purchase:  21 November 2017
Retailer:                Remotes R Us, Anywhere City New Jersey

Nature of complaint:

We purchased this product as a birthday present. When first made operational, the toy was uncontrollable, and was moving extremely quickly.

It's a flying, propeller based toy. It hit our child, repeatedly, apparently homing in on the remote control. We were able to stop the toy by hitting it with a broom.

The child suffered several lacerations, fortunately none serious, but it was a very traumatic experience. We discovered the toy has extremely sharp propeller blades, and some edges of the toy, particularly the beak, are made of sharp metal. We consider it fortunate that no more damage was done.

The retailer advised we should complain to the manufacturer. This was done immediately, both by phone and in writing. We have yet to receive a response, despite verbal assurances.

We request that all possible legal action is taken to remove this product from sale, before it does serious injury to a child.

Yours sincerely



Copy of bill of sale
Copy of advertising from manufacturer
Copy of doctor's report
List of relevant contacts


Please note:

  • This text is intended for advisory and guideline purposes only.
  • Any business letter can become a legal document, so check your content properly before issuing.
  • Any executable or statutorily defined document should be checked for compliance with legal requirements, and you should seek legal advice regarding its contents.