Toy Industry Association (TIA) Statement on Magnets in Toys

October 29, 2013

Magnets can provide a fun and educational component to a toy. Strict federal toy safety standards prohibit the use of all magnets in any piece of a toy that is small enough to be swallowed and is intended for children under 14 years old.


The U.S. government has issued warnings regarding certain small, powerful magnets (known as rare earth magnets) that are sometimes found in office products or other non-toy items. These products have been mistakenly referenced as “toys.”  They are not toys.  These items are intended for adults, not for children, and are labeled accordingly.  They are not subject to the same strict standards that regulate toys.

Rare earth magnets pose a serious risk to children if they are swallowed. They should never be given to young children, especially those under the age of three years. Kids and teens should be instructed to never put magnets in or near their mouths or noses, as ingestion or inhalation of multiple magnets can pose serious internal injury, infection and even death.  In the event of magnet ingestion, medical treatment should be sought immediately.

This statement was originally published in September 2012 and reaffirmed by the Toy Industry Association in October 2013.