A preliminary class action lawsuit settlement between the Charleston Water System (Charleston, South Carolina) and wipes manufacturer Kimberly-Clark could affect any entity that owned and/or operated wastewater conveyance and treatment systems since January 6, 2018. Class members need to be aware of this settlement and how it may affect them.

The settlement, if approved by a court, would require Kimberly-Clark’s products to meet current flushability standards as published by the International Water Services Flushability Group, implement independent testing, and require educational content and label changes. It also will require the Charleston Water System to endorse these Kimberly-Clark products as “flushable.”

The settlement would have no effect on claims by class members seeking money for harm caused by wipes. However, it would release all claims for injunctive relief — essentially court orders to stop a behavior — by any class member, related to any wipe product (flushable or non-flushable) currently or formerly manufactured by Kimberly-Clark.

The rest of the defendants named in this lawsuit have moved to have the court dismiss this case entirely.

Know Your Rights

The Water Environment Federation (WEF) has created a one-page document that outlines the essential elements of the pending settlement. This document as well as additional materials to come are intended to ensure that all class members are aware of the case and its potential effect on them.

Settlement Overview

More Information on Wipes

Pending Settlement Agreement
This PDF is the settling document as it was filed with the United States District Court District Of South Carolina, Charleston Division.

Plaintiffs Motion for Preliminary Approval
This document requests that the court approve the settlement agreement reached by Charleston Water System and Kimberly-Clark.

Plaintiffs Memorandum of Law in Support
This document lists the relevant factors in approving this preliminary settlement agreement. It includes an extensive definition of the class members.

Related News: 
Water Sector Request: ‘Flush Wisely’ (March 23, 2020)

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