Every year, Cal Biz Lit eagerly awaits the Attorney General's release of the Alpert report, summarizing the past year's Proposition 65 settlements by defendant and by private party enforcer. CBL hasn't yet figured out who Alpert is, but he/she publishes a really useful report. Then, after the report is issued, CBL publishes summaries. So here we go again with the summaries.
CBL had the sense that settlement amounts per case went up in 2013, and it turns out this is true. Chanler settlements were up an average of 2%, Center for Environmental Health's up 17%, and Consumer Advocacy Group's settlements climbed an average of 29% (although the total amount CAG recovered was way down). Environmental Research Center's settlements were up by 10% per case. And the biggest jump was for Mateel Environmental Justice Center. However, there increase was attributable to a case Mateel litigated against H.D. Hudson Manufacturing Company, beat the defendant in a "phase 1" trial of Hudson's exposure level defense claim and then settled for more than $200,000, most of it going to attorneys' fees and costs.
So, here is what the settlements in 2013 looked like:
There were a number of CEH and Chanler settlements inolving flame retardants in early 2014, and the amounts were quite a bit higher than the numbers shown in the above table. So we think the 2014 numbers will be quite a bit higher when the 2014 report is issued in May, 2015.
Meanwhile, here are the highs and the lows of last year's settlements: