Per-and polyfluoroalkyl substances, known as PFAS or “forever chemicals,” comprise nearly 5,000 manmade chemicals used in materials like nonstick cookware, outdoor clothing, coating additives, food containers, furniture, rugs, cosmetics, pesticides and firefighting foam. PFAS regulation and litigation have surged in recent years as health concerns with PFAS have been identified. Laws and regulations focused on PFAS are expected to rapidly increase in the near future, at both the state and federal levels.
Businesses and Industries at Risk
A myriad of businesses and industries are potentially subject to being targeted or affected by PFAS regulation and litigation. This includes those using PFAS chemicals in manufacturing, using PFAS containing materials in goods and services provided to the customers, using firefighting foam containing PFAS, and companies whose operations are impacted by PFAS contamination already in the environment:
- Drinking water suppliers
- Clothing, textiles and upholstery
- Gas stations
- Fuel storage, transmission and distribution
- Military installations
- Municipal fire departments
- Oil and gas production facilities
- Pharmaceuticals and medical supplies
- Wastewater utilities
How Eckert Seamans Can Help
The attorneys at Eckert Seamans lean on decades of experience and expertise to assist clients in identifying and mitigating the unique risks and challenges associated with PFAS. Our team of environmental, mass tort and class action defense, commercial litigation, real estate, labor and employment and insurance coverage attorneys can support clients though:
- Risk Management: We can assist clients in evaluating potential PFAS liability risks and help develop strategies to mitigate and manage those risks.
- Regulatory tracking: Our attorneys help clients track PFAS legislation and regulation that can affect their businesses and environmental compliance obligations. A number of states have already adopted regulations addressing PFAS in drinking water and PFAS cleanup levels, and PFAS legislation has been proposed in nearly half of all states. Federal action has lagged behind state action, but US EPA is now working to regulate PFAS with regard to drinking water, wastewater, TRI reporting, sampling and analysis, and disposal.
- Federal action has lagged behind state action, but US EPA is now working to regulate PFAS with regard to drinking water, wastewater, TRI reporting, sampling and analysis, and disposal.
- Investigation: We can guide investigations to identify PFAS contamination and exposures.
- Remediation: We can help manage remediation of sites that have been contaminated by PFAS, whether the remediation is voluntary or ordered by a regulatory agency.
- Litigation: Our attorneys can provide skilled and effective representation in state and federal court in PFAS-related litigation matters.
- Communications and public relations: We can assist clients in managing effective communications with stakeholders, employees, the public and regulatory agencies.
- Insurance claims: We can help with evaluating and pursuing insurance claims for PFAS exposures, contamination and liabilities.