As You Sow v. Fisher Scientific Company, Inc., et al.

Posted: 04/26/1996  browse the case archive

Proposition 65 private enforcer and whistleblower As You Sow and chemical manufacturer Fisher Scientific Company entered an agreement resolving AYS's allegations that Fisher Scientific Company, Inc. ("Fisher") failed to warn consumers in California that the chemical products it sold contained chemicals that are listed pursuant to Proposition 65 as chemicals known to cause cancer, reproductive harm and birth defects. The April 26, 1996 settlement, which covered dozens of listed chemicals and hundreds of Fisher's products, was approved and entered as a judgment by San Francisco Superior Court on May 1, 1996.

The terms of the settlement required Fisher to implement a specific warning system that includes Proposition 65 signage, product warning labels, and revisions to the MSDSs included with certain products shipped to retail stores or customers in California. In addition, Fisher agreed to pay up to $82,000 in settlement payments, including a $6,000 payment in lieu of civil penalties which AYS will donate to the Santa Clara Center for Workplace and Occupational Safety, a $5,000 civil penalty payment to be divided between AYS (25%) and the California Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (75%), and up to $42,500 in additional payments, including a guaranteed civil penalty payment in the amount of $2,500 and up to $20,000 in further civil penalty payments, the latter of which may be offset by Fisher in credits of $1 per every $2 Fisher actually spends on training related to chemical handling and safety. Under the settlement, Fisher will also reimburse AYS for its reasonable investigation and attorneys fees incurred by the private Proposition 65 enforcement action.

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