As You Sow v. Kar Products, et al.

Posted: 07/14/1995  browse the case archive

In a settlement reached on July 14, 1995, Proposition 65 private enforcer and whistleblower, As You Sow, and manufacturer of paint and cleaning products, Kar Products, settled pending litigation and resolved AYS's claims regarding alleged violations of Proposition 65 by Kar. The notice of violation and complaint alleged that Kar violated Proposition 65 when it sold certain paint and cleaning products containing toluene and carbon black without providing a health hazard warning regarding the types of harm associated with exposures to these chemicals. Toluene is listed pursuant to Proposition 65 as a chemical that is known to cause birth defects or other reproductive harm. Carbon black is a known carcinogen under the act.

The terms of the parties' settlement requires Kar to provide specific health hazard warning labels for the products that identify the risk of cancer, or reproductive harm or birth defects associated with exposures to the particular listed chemical(s) contained in its products. In addition, Kar revised the MSDS included with its products to contain the health hazard warning information required for the labels. Settlement payments required by the agreement totaled $15,150. The monetary terms required Kar to pay $5,000 in civil penalties, to be allocated between the California Office of Health Hazard Assessment ($3,750) and AYS ($1,250), and to pay the whistleblower $10,150 in restitution and costs. AYS donated the restitution component of the settlement to the Natural Resources Defense Council and the AYS Proposition 65 Investigation Fund. The cost component also reimbursed AYS for the fees and costs incurred investigating, litigating, and negotiating a settlement of the private enforcement action in the public interest. On July 14, 1995, the parties submitted the settlement to the court and it was approved and entered as a judgment thereafter.

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