12/08/2023 | News release | Archived content
Button cell and coin battery manufacturers and importers need to know about new requirements that come into effect next year. On September 21, 2023, the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), pursuant to its authority under Reese's Law, published two rules imposing additional requirements for button cell and coin batteries and consumer products containing button cell and coin batteries. See88 FR 65296; 88 FR 65274. Reese's Law, 15 U.S.C. § 2056e, signed into law on August 16, 2022, was passed to protect children six years old and younger from button cell and coin battery ingestion hazards.
Together, Reese's Law and the two new rules from CPSC impose a broad set of construction, performance, packaging, and labeling requirements on battery manufacturers and importers.
Products manufactured or imported after March 19, 2024
The packaging of button cell or coin batteries, including those packaged separately with a consumer product, must comply with various warning label requirements.
Products manufactured or imported after September 21, 2024
Section 3 of Reese's Law
Button cell or coin batteries, or consumer products containing a button cell or coin battery, must be packaged in accordance with child-resistant packaging requirements in 16 C.F.R. 1700.15.
Products manufactured or imported after February 12, 2023
I. Safety Standards for Button Cell and Coin Batteries (Direct Final Rule)
CPSC issued a direct final ruleadopting ANSI/UL 4200A as a mandatory safety standard, which includes construction, performance, and labeling requirements. See88 FR 65274 . The rule requires products manufactured or imported after October 23, 2023, to comply with these requirements. But CPSC announced that it will exercise its enforcement discretion by not enforcing these requirements until March 19, 2024.
A. Construction Requirements
ANSI/UL 4200A's construction requirements distinguish between products with removable/replaceable button cell or coin batteries and products with non-replaceable button cell or coin batteries.
Products with removable/replaceable batteries: To prevent children from accessing the battery, battery compartments in products with removable/replaceable button cell or coin batteries shall be secured by one of the following methods:
Products with non-replaceable batteries: Products with non-replaceable button cell or coin batteries must effectively prevent removal of the battery by a child or the user through, for instance, the use of soldering or fasteners.
B. Performance Requirements
ANSI/UL 4200A also sets forth performance requirements to ensure products containing button cell or coin batteries "do not present a risk of unintentional access by children." These provisions require products to pass several tests, including drop, impact, crush, and torque tests, among others.
C. Labeling Requirements
ANSI/UL 4200A section 7 requires that the principal display panel of packaging for consumer products containing button cell or coin batteries include a warning, such as the warning below:
Additionally, consumer products containing button cell or coin batteries must also be marked with the following warning:
If the above warning does not fit given the size of the product, the product must include the following warning symbol, which is internationally recognized to mean: "Warning: contains coin battery":
II. Additional Labeling Requirements for Button Cell and Coin Batteries (Final Rule)
CPSC also promulgated a final rule to establish warning label requirements for the packaging of button cell or coin batteries, including those packaged separately with a consumer product. See88 FR 65296. The final rule requires that the principal display panel include a warning label, such as the warning below:
Warning statements must be clearly visible, prominent, legible, and permanently marked, among other requirements.
Additionally, the following statements must be placed on the principal or secondary display panels:
These requirements apply to products manufactured or imported after September 21, 2024.
III. Packaging Requirements for Button Cell or Coin Batteries
Section 3 of Reese's Law requires any button cell or coin battery, or consumer product containing a button cell or coin battery, that is sold, distributed, or imported into the U.S. to be packaged in accordance with child-resistant packaging requirements in 16 C.F.R. 1700.15. These requirements became effective February 12, 2023.
Manufacturers of products subject to these requirements must certify compliance in a Children's Product Certificate or a General Certificate of Compliance. Third-party testing and certification of children's products subject to Reese's Law are not required until December 20, 2023.
V. Consult Legal Counsel
Reese's Law adds a number of safety-related requirements for many battery-containing consumer products. Companies should review their practices and consult with legal counsel to evaluate compliance.
A direct final rule is a rule issued without a preceding proposed rule and notice/comment period. Instead, the direct final rule goes into effect on a certain date, unless the rule receives substantive adverse comments prior to going into effect. In contrast, a final rule is issued following a proposed rule and notice/comment period.