Proposition 65 is a California law that requires business owners to disclose when materials or products in their businesses might cause cancer. The problem is, this law was made in 1986, and at that time, only dozens of chemicals were on the list of products that caused cancer and needed warnings. Now, changes to the law have tried to ease regulations on businesses, as the list of chemicals ended up in the hundreds.

When businesses have to disclose information about products that consumers could be exposed to, it is important that they have all the proper information. Sometimes businesses might not even know about the chemicals that are in their products, and this can open them up to lawsuits.

While it is important that consumers understand certain risks, common products used in businesses can make it difficult for them to stay in compliance with Proposition 65. They might face lawsuits from consumers, and leave businesses hurting financially.

When compliance issues are presented to businesses, they might not understand that they have even been out of compliance. Speaking with an experienced environmental law attorney might be a wise decision. They can help a business understand their rights and work to bring the business up to full compliance if there really was an issue. They can also help form a rigorous defense against compliance allegations. While legal reforms continue to evolve, businesses can help protect themselves by understanding environmental compliance issues, even if their business isn’t one where they would normally expect to deal with environmental law.

Source: National Public Radio, “Calif. Toxin Law Warns Consumers, But Can Burden Businesses,” Jan. 5, 2013