Held v. Hot Topic, Inc., et al.

Posted: 01/04/2010  browse the case archive

On January 4, 2010, the Marin County Superior Court entered a Consent Judgment in Held v. Hot Topic, Inc., et al., which resolved citizen enforcer Anthony E. Held, Ph.D., P.E.'s allegations that the defendant, Hot Topic, Inc. ("Hot Topic"), sold children's apparel and zipper pulls 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, Hot Topic agreed not to sell any children's apparel or zipper pulls in California after November 30, 2009, unless the apparel and zipper pulls contain less than 1,000 parts per million of DEHP when analyzed using state or federally approved testing methodologies. For a brief interim period, Hot Topic sold the apparel and zipper pulls with Proposition 65 warnings, after which time all of the apparel and zipper pulls were required to meet the reformulation standards.

The Consent Judgment requires settlement payments of $70,000, to be divided therein between civil penalties, 75% of which are paid to California's Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment, and compensation to whistleblower Held and his counsel for their successful enforcement of this matter in the public interest.

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