Brimer v. Franklin Financial Management, Inc.

Posted: 01/09/2013  browse the case archive

In the enforcement action Brimer v. Franklin Financial Management, Inc., the Marin County Superior Court entered a judgment on January 9, 2013, which resolved citizen enforcer Russell Brimer's allegations that the defendant Franklin Financial Management, LLC ("Franklin") sold aprons containing the phthalate chemical di(2-ethylhexyl)phthalate ("DEHP") and kitchen tools with grips containing di(2-ethylhexyl)phthalate ("DEHP") and the heavy metal lead in the State of California without providing the requisite health hazard warnings.

As part of the settlement, for a brief six-month period, Franklin agreed not to order or manufacture any aprons or kitchen tools with grips in California unless the aprons and kitchen tools comply with reformulation standards or bear Proposition 65 warnings, after which point all aprons and kitchen tools shall be reformulated. Additionally, by August 31, 2012, Franklin agreed to notify its then current-vendors of the reformulation standards and instruct them to provide aprons and kitchen tools with grips that comply with these standards expeditiously. Due to Franklin's commitment to comply by these heightened standards, Brimer agreed to credit a portion of the civil fine that would otherwise be applied. Should Franklin agree to expand the Consent Judgment to encompass all of the United States, Brimer agreed to credit an additional portion of the civil penalty.

The Consent Judgment requires settlement payments of $85,500, to be divided therein between civil penalties, 75% of which are paid to California's Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment, and whistleblower Brimer and his counsel for their successful enforcement of this matter in the public interest.

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