As far back as 1975, the use of lead in paint has been forbidden in the United States. Studies conducted since then show that fewer children now ingest harmful lead paint chips. As a direct result, fewer children suffer the consequences of lead poisoning, which include inattentiveness, hyperactivity and irritable behavior, difficulties with reading and learning, delayed growth and hearing loss. In extreme cases, permanent brain damage and death have been attributed to ingesting lead paint.
Yet products for the home manufactured outside of the United States, China in particular, are sometimes found to contain dangerous lead levels. In 2013 the surface paint on pink Sleepharmony Metal Youth Beds, for example, contained lead levels that exceeded allowable limits. This follows multiple product recalls over recent years due to lead in several product categories:
Educational learning aids
Clearly, when a product poses a health risk to people because it exceeds allowable limits of hazardous substances, it suggests that victims should pursue compensation for injuries and related expenses. However, for several reasons, it is difficult to sue a manufacturer in China, where the decision to use lead paint was made. Fortunately, the law also allows injury victims to sue any “sellers” of contaminated products, which includes importers, distributors and retailers. These parties have a professional interest and responsibility to convey safe products, and the consumer inherently trusts that no harm will come from their use. These parties, in turn, have a pathway, known as indemnification, to sue the manufacturer after a consumer has sued them.
When families discover that one of their own — children in particular — have been exposed to toxic levels of lead or other hazardous materials from a product they purchased, it is imperative to speak with a products liability attorney. The rules on statutes of limitations in California require that you initiate an investigation and possible lawsuit soon after you’ve discovered the problem.
Posted in Product Liability
Tagged lead paint, mass tort claim, toxic tort