Julia Hatcher helps clients navigate laws that control chemicals and products at every life cycle stage, including the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA), the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA), the Superfund law (CERCLA), the Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-Know Act, the Federal Hazardous Substances Act, the Safe Drinking Water Act, the Clean Water Act, the Clean Air Act, federal transportation statutes, the Occupational Safety and Health Act, and related state laws, as well as the intersection of these laws with toxic tort liability. Her chemicals knowledge also extends to consumer products-related requirements for labeling, reporting, “green” and “health” claims, and recalls administered by the Consumer Products Safety Commission, the Federal Trade Commission, and state counterpart agencies.
Ms. Hatcher’s experience includes international chemical control requirements, such as the European Union Registration, Evaluation, Authorisation and Restriction of Chemicals (REACH); the Stockholm Convention; and the Convention on Long-Range Transboundary Air Pollution (LRTAP).
Ms. Hatcher helps client navigate multiple federal agencies, including the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the Consumer Products Safety Commission (CPSC), and the Department of Transportation (DOT); agency sub-units, including the Pipeline Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA), the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), and the Federal Trade Commission (FTC); and state counterpart agencies.
She assists clients addressing a wide array of chemicals and products regulatory requirements, such as to obtain new chemical and product approvals; to comply with requirements governing emissions, disposal, and claims pertaining to chemical content, hazards, health benefits, and “green” attributes; to determine whether and when reporting has been triggered as to a “defect”, “substantial hazard,” or “substantial risk”; and to perform specialized due diligence for transactions involving chemicals and products manufacturers.
Ms. Hatcher’s practice also includes strategic legal risk management and product defense. She helps clients with reference not only to current legal requirements, but also to emerging areas, such as the measurement of chemicals in the body, nanotechnology, and climate change. In this aspect of her practice, Ms. Hatcher works with clients to anticipate potential future business-threatening regulatory requirements and activist tactics and assists them to manage these challenges through various measures, such as, for example, product substitution and product defense based on marshalling data to show absence of risk, the criticality of the product due to the lack of substitutes, and/or the environmental and societal benefits of the product.
Ms. Hatcher also relies on her experience to recognize the potential for litigation liability that can stem from regulatory approvals, compliance decisions/actions, product substitution, and product defense, and to assist in managing these legal risks.
Ms. Hatcher has particular experience in the chemical, automotive, semiconductor, electronics, and personal care products industries. She also has deep knowledge of various “emerging contaminant” chemistries, including in particular, per-and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) chemistries, such as perfluorooctanesulfonic acid (PFOS) and perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA).
Prior to practicing law, Ms. Hatcher served as a law clerk intern for Chief Judge Harry T. Edwards of the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit.