Products Liability Consumer Protection

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VW ‘Dieselgate’ Settlement Benefit Consumers, Environment

News of “Dieselgate” broke in the Fall 2014, when vaunted vehicle-maker Volkswagen was accused of dodging federal emissions laws by rigging its automobiles so they would pass smog tests. The summer of 2015 saw the scandal...more

Massive CPSC Recall Leaked to the Press by “CPSC Source” Prior to Official Agency Announcement

Today the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (“CPSC”) and Health Canada announced a massive joint recall with IKEA involving over 35 million pieces of furniture that can pose a tip over hazard to small children. While we...more

2016 – Already a Record Year for CPSC Civil Penalty Settlements

At only the halfway point in 2016, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (“CPSC” or the “Commission”) has already broken last year’s record for total amount of civil penalties. Thanks in part to the largest CPSC civil...more

Nationwide GE Labeling Leaps Forward

Four years after California’s genetically engineered (GE) food labeling initiative was defeated, but just days before Vermont’s GE law is to go into effect, the U.S. Senate is poised to impose such labeling nationwide. The...more

New Proposed Legislation: Doctors Must Report Med Device-Related Deaths & Injuries

Representatives Mike Fitzpatrick (R-PA) and Louise Slaughter (D-NY) announced plans to propose the Medical Device Guardians Act of 2016. According to a press release from Rep. Fitzpatrick, the Act is “a package of bills aimed...more

Takata Airbag Recall Balloons — 7 Automakers Join List

NHTSA Calls Controversy ‘Largest and Most Complex Safety Recall in U.S. History’ - The consumer-safety threat posed by defective airbags in millions of vehicles worldwide has escalated again....more

EU REACH Annexes Amended to Reflect Non-Animal Testing Requirement

The REACH annexes regarding skin and eye irritation and acute dermal toxicity have been amended and published in the Official Journal of the European Union. They became effective on June 20, 2016, with amendments for skin...more

Do Warnings Work?

We observed some while ago that at least some courts have questioned the “heeding presumption,” which presumes that if a manufacturer gave a warning, a consumer would have followed it. The Nevada Supreme Court, for example,...more

Why the FDA Needs to Change Its Food Recall Policies

Add this to FDA’s growing list of things to do: improve the food recall initiation process. According to a memorandum published on June 8, 2016, the Office of Inspector General (OIG) of the Department of Health and Human...more

The Last Set of Major FSMA Regulations Are Done!

The last of FDA’s seven “foundational” rules mandated under the Food Safety Modernization Act of 2011 (FSMA) was published at the end of last month, just a few days before the May 31, 2016 deadline agreed to by the Agency...more

Still Waiting—FDA Delays Rulemaking

The FDA recently announced that it would once again delay promulgation of its proposed rule for generic drug labeling obligations. This action followed introduction of a spending bill that would have blocked funding for the...more

UL Issues First Safety Certification for Hoverboards

On May 10, 2016, Underwriter’s Laboratories (UL), the global safety science organization, announced that it issued the first safety certification to the UL 2272 safety requirements for electrical systems of self-balancing...more

Congress Sends Chemical Safety Reform Legislation to Be Signed into Law

The historic reform of the Toxic Substances Control Act overhauls the United States’ primary chemical safety law for the first time in 40 years. Following months of closed-door negotiations, the US House of...more

Unpacking the Toxic Substances Control Act Reform Bill

The U.S. Senate and House of Representatives have passed the long-pending Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) reform legislation, which will bolster the government’s power to regulate a wide variety of chemicals. The bill...more

Advertising Law - June 2016

First Circuit Affirms Ruling Against Jerk.com - In a victory for the Federal Trade Commission, the First Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed a Commission ruling that website Jerk.com, a self-described reputation management...more

Senate Appropriations Bill Targets FDA Rulemaking Agenda

The Senate Appropriations Committee is looking to tinker with the Food and Drug Administration’s rulemaking agenda through its fiscal year 2017 funding bill for the Department of Agriculture and FDA (S. 2956). Passed...more

A Tall Drink of Water: Ninth Circuit Affirms Dismissal of Costco VitaRain Class Action on Plausibility and Causation Grounds

On May 5, 2016, the Ninth Circuit affirmed a district court’s decision to dismiss, without leave to amend, a class action complaint alleging a violation of the Washington Consumer Protection Act against Costco for the...more

CPSC Reaches Second Civil Penalty Agreement in As Many Weeks; Sunbeam Products to Pay $4.5 Million to Resolve Late Reporting...

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) is set to announce yet another civil penalty settlement. Sunbeam Products d/b/a Jarden Consumer Solutions (Sunbeam or the Company) has agreed to pay a $4.5 million civil...more

EPA Chemical Data Reporting Rule Brings Challenges and Opportunities

Every four years, companies that manufacture or import chemical substances in the U.S. in quantities greater than 25,000 lbs./year by site must submit detailed manufacturing, processing and use information on each of these...more

Olympus Duodenoscope Recall: Lessons Learned on How to Manage a Class II Device Failure

Earlier this year Olympus Corp. (“Olympus”) announced that it would recall and redesign its TJF-Q180V duodenoscope following its link to deadly patient infections in the United States and abroad. This situation presents an...more

FDA Finally Decides that “Evaporated Cane Juice” Is Misleading Consumers

Evaporated cane juice, a term usually used to inform about sweeteners derived from the fluid extract of sugar cane, is present on the ingredient lists of many products we see on grocery store shelves. However, newly finalized...more

Your Food Labels Are Getting a Makeover

If you are one of those consumers that studies food labels (I’m right there with you) or, more importantly, a packaged food supplier, be prepared: your food labels will be getting a makeover. On May 20, the FDA released...more

FSMA Food Defense Rule Requires Firms to Address Risk of Terrorism

In an effort to prevent wide-scale public harm through the nation’s food supply from acts of terrorism, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has published its final rule regarding Mitigation Strategies to Protect Food...more

CPSC Announces Civil Penalty against Teavana; Commissioners Remain Divided on Civil Penalty Enforcement, Calculations, and...

On May 26, 2016 the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (“CPSC”) announced through a Record of Commission Action (“RCA”) that Teavana Corporation (“Teavana”) has agreed to pay a $3.75 million civil penalty to resolve...more

California Plaintiffs Say that Size Matters: Consumer Fraud Class Action Challenges Slack-Fill in Protein Products

According to named plaintiffs in a consumer fraud action filed in December in the Southern District of California, size matters when making it comes to making a purchase. In fact, Plaintiffs claim that the average consumer’s...more

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