Held v. Everstar Merchandise Co., Ltd. and Tomson Merchandise Co., Ltd.

Posted: 10/02/2012  browse the case archive

The Chanler Group’s groundbreaking case against fifteen manufacturers, distributors, and sellers of Halloween products for children and adults was resolved on October 2, 2012, when the Alameda County Superior Court entered a Consent Judgment in Held v. Forum Novelties, Inc. et al.  The Halloween Group enforcement action resolved citizen enforcer Anthony E. Held, Ph.D., P.E.’s allegations that the defendant Everstar Merchandise Co., Ltd. and Tomson Merchandise Co., Ltd. and its downstream releasees Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. and CVS Pharmacy, Inc. (collectively “Everstar”) sold indoor/outdoor home/party décor and games containing the phthalate chemical di(2-ethylhexyl)phthalate (“DEHP”) in the State of California without providing the requisite health hazard warnings.

As part of the settlement, Everstar agreed not to sell any Halloween indoor/outdoor home/party décor and games in California after November 16, 2012, unless the décor and games comply with the reformulation standards outlined in Section 3.1 of the Consent Judgment.  Additionally, by June 30, 2012, Everstar agreed to provide the reformulation standards to its vendors and instruct them to provide products that comply expeditiously.  Due to Everstar’s commitment to reformulation, Held agreed to credit a portion of the civil fine that would otherwise be applied. 

The Consent Judgment requires settlement payments of $53,750, divided therein between civil penalties, 75% of which are paid to California’s Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment, the waived civil fine, and compensation to whistleblower Held and his counsel for their successful enforcement of this matter in the public interest.

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