Vi-Jon Store-Brand Hand Sanitizers “99.99% of Germs” Claim Class Action

With the appearance of Covid-19, and the necessity of curbing its spread, hand sanitizers have become ubiquitous. Vi-Jon, Inc. makes, advertises, and labels hand sanitizers for store brands, including CVS Health, Equate (Walmart), Germ-x, and Walgreen Co. The complaint for this class action alleges that Vi-Jon makes claims for the germ-killing abilities of its hand sanitizers that are not true.

The Nationwide Class for this action is all citizens of the US who, within the statute of limitations period, bought the Vi-Jon products. There is also a California Subclass, for citizens of California.

The complaint alleges, “Each of the Products state[s] on the front-facing, primary display panel that it kills 99.99% of germs[.]” The word “germs,” the complaint says, is generally understood as organisms that cause disease. If so, the claim is false, it says: “The Products, however, do not ‘kill’ 99.99% of the organisms that cause disease.”

According to the complaint, “The Products are substantially ineffective against certain microbes, including certain non-enveloped viruses (for example, norovirus), protozoa (for example, the microbe that causes toxoplasmosis), and bacterial spores (for example, the organism that causes the gastric condition [] C. difficile).”

These microbes, or “germs” against which the products are not effective, the complaint says, “comprise more than .01% of germs.” The complaint says that Vi-Jon “omits material information concerning the limitations of the Products in making” the 99.99% representation.

In fact, the complaint says, “According to the CDC, hand washing with soap and water is more effective than hand sanitizer at removing certain kinds of germs, including norovirus.” Norovirus can resist many disinfectants, and the complaint says, because norovirus “has a structure known as a capsid—a protein shell—which alcohol cannot readily penetrate. Because the active ingredient in each of the Products is ethyl alcohol, the Products are ineffective against norovirus.”

The complaint claims that the products are also ineffective against poliovirus, polyomavirus, hand foot and mouth disease virus, human papillomavirus (HPV), cryptosporidium, enterococci, and hepatitis A.

The complaint alleges that the ineffectiveness of hand sanitizers can be compounded if the hands to which they’re applied are “dirty, grimy, or greasy.” The problem may be exacerbated, too, by the products’ directions for use, which require only a single application to the hands “until dry,” because “[t]his short exposure time is insufficient to inactivate certain microbes, particularly because the ethyl alcohol evaporates quickly.”

The complaint therefore charges that the products’ labeling is false, deceptive, and misleading.

Article Type: Lawsuit
Topic: Consumer

Most Recent Case Event

Vi-Jon Store-Brand Hand Sanitizers “99.99% of Germs” Claim Complaint

July 27, 2020

With the appearance of Covid-19, and the necessity of curbing its spread, hand sanitizers have become ubiquitous. Vi-Jon, Inc. makes, advertises, and labels hand sanitizers for store brands, including CVS Health, Equate (Walmart), Germ-x, and Walgreen Co. The complaint for this class action alleges that Vi-Jon makes claims for the germ-killing abilities of its hand sanitizers that are not true.

Vi-Jon Store-Brand Hand Sanitizers “99.99% of Germs” Claim Complaint

Case Event History

Vi-Jon Store-Brand Hand Sanitizers “99.99% of Germs” Claim Complaint

July 27, 2020

With the appearance of Covid-19, and the necessity of curbing its spread, hand sanitizers have become ubiquitous. Vi-Jon, Inc. makes, advertises, and labels hand sanitizers for store brands, including CVS Health, Equate (Walmart), Germ-x, and Walgreen Co. The complaint for this class action alleges that Vi-Jon makes claims for the germ-killing abilities of its hand sanitizers that are not true.

Vi-Jon Store-Brand Hand Sanitizers “99.99% of Germs” Claim Complaint
Tags: Deceptive Advertising, Deceptive Labels, Item Does Not Do What It Is Advertised to Do