Lead-based paint is not to be taken lightly whether you’re a renovation contractor, landlord or property manager. Violations can be incredibly costly.

For instance, Sears Home Improvement Products, Inc. failed to provide documentation regarding the requirement to:

  1. Assign certified renovators.
  2. Provide certification of compliance.
  3. Provide on-the-job training for workers.
  4. Comply with lead-safe work practice standards, including post-cleaning verification.
  5. Establish and maintain records or make available, permit access to or copying of records.

As a result, the proposed Consent Decree requires the company to pay a civil penalty of $400,000, and perform enhanced compliance measures company-wide.

Don't get fined for unsafe Lead-based paint practices!

Last year, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced 125 federal enforcement actions completed over the last year involving alleged noncompliance with at least one of the EPA’s lead-based paint requirements:

  • Toxic Substances Control Act.
  • Renovation, Repair and Painting Rule.
  • Lead-based Paint Activities Rule.
  • Lead Disclosure Rule pursuant to the Residential Lead-based Paint Hazard Reduction Act.

Cases ranged from small businesses to major companies. According to the EPA, “in a criminal prosecution in New York, realtor Maureen Walck pled guilty to knowingly and willfully violating the Lead Disclosure Rule’s requirements to disclose lead-based paint information to a prospective home buyer, whose child was later diagnosed with lead poisoning.” The charge carries a maximum sentence of one-year imprisonment and a $100,000 fine.

Lima Refining Co., settled alleged Clean Air Act violations through a civil judicial agreement. It includes a project valued at $1,750,000 to eliminate lead risks in local low-income residences with children or pregnant women, and a $1 million penalty.

Collectively, the settlements require alleged violators to pay $1,046,891 in penalties, and that’s even with the EPA reducing several penalties. The state, local authorities, clients, and other companies can all report unsafe lead paint practices.

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