This month marks the five year anniversary of the enactment of the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act of 2008 into law. Commonly referred to as the “CPSIA,” the law has had a dramatic impact over the past five years on all firms involved in manufacturing, importing and selling consumer products. Passed by Congress in the wake of the “year of the recall” (2007), the CPSIA touches most consumer products under the jurisdiction of the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (“CPSC”). The law has had the most impact on companies involved with making or selling children’s products.
Readers of this blog are likely well-aware by now of the law’s new mandates for both general-use and children’s products regarding testing and certification, tracking labels for children’s products, lead paint and content limits for children’s products, ban on phthalates for toys and child care articles, and establishment of a public product safety database for consumers to exchange safety information and report incidents to the CPSC (saferproducts.gov). These are only a small handful of new requirements imposed upon the consumer products industry by the law.
Here at Mintz Levin, we have seen a noticeable uptick in product safety awareness and a desire among firms manufacturing, selling and importing consumer products to enact safety compliance monitoring programs and response policies and procedures for their product lines. In fact, it has been our pleasure over the past five years advising clients on the ever-changing landscape of federal, state and international product safety law, and best practices to ensure the continued safety of their products, specifically in light of the CPSIA’s passage.
Our colleague, Matt Howsare, former Chief of Staff of the CPSC, recently commented to Law360 on the effect of the CPSIA on industry, including the legal industry. Make sure to check it out this informative article!
Member / Co-chair, Retail and Consumer Products
Chuck is an antitrust and regulatory lawyer who devotes a significant portion of his practice to assisting clients with consumer product safety and environmental regulations. He serves as general counsel to numerous trade associations. For the Association of Home Appliance Manufacturers, Chuck negotiated and drafted amendments to federal laws, including the Consumer Product Safety Act. Corporations in many industries, local governments, and state agencies are also on his client roster. He represents clients before a wide array of federal agencies, including the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), state agencies, and international regulatory organizations.
Chuck is engaged in a federal and international regulatory and legislative practice. He has been extensively involved in product safety, product recall issues, environmental, tax, health care, technology, and energy issues, and public finance legislative and regulatory matters for a variety of trade associations, corporations, local governments, and state agencies.
His practice encompasses work before the US Consumer Product Safety Commission, Departments of State, Health and Human Services, Energy, and Treasury, US Trade Representative, Environmental Protection Agency, Federal Trade Commission, the IRS, and other federal and state agencies. He also has extensive experience dealing with Canada, the European Commission, and international bodies.
Chuck also engages in trade association representation and antitrust counseling. As general counsel of the Association of Home Appliance Manufacturers, Chuck negotiated and drafted the amendments to the Consumer Product Safety Act and the National Appliance Energy Conservation Act, and represents the appliance industry at international bodies dealing with safety, energy, ozone depletion, and global warming.
Before joining Mintz, Chuck practiced regulatory law with a law firm in Chicago and then worked in the Executive Office of the President before entering private practice in Washington.