Ohio Judge Says City Can Go Forward with Lead Paint Lawsuit

April 1, 2008

A federal judge dismissed a lawsuit filed by Sherwin-Williams Co. that sought to keep the city from suing the company to help pay for the cleanup of properties contaminated with lead paint.

Sherwin-Williams failed to prove any imminent damages, and other courts could take up any constitutional issues raised by the lawsuit, said U.S. District Judge Edmund Sargus Jr.

The city of Columbus sued Sherwin-Williams in 2006, and the case remains pending in Franklin County Common Pleas Court.

City Attorney Richard Pfeiffer Jr. said Friday the company’s suit had no merit.

Charles Moellenberg, a lawyer for Cleveland-based Sherwin-Williams, said he had no immediate comment.

Columbus is the only Ohio city still suing Sherwin-Williams and other companies.

A judge in Toledo threw out that city’s lawsuit against Sherwin-Williams in December. Other cities, including Akron and Cleveland, dropped their lawsuits.

Lead paint was banned in the United States for use in homes in 1978. Exposure to lead is particularly dangerous for young children, who can develop a reduced IQ, behavioral disorders, stomach problems or brain damage if they breathe in lead dust or eat lead paint chips.

Was this article valuable?

Here are more articles you may enjoy.