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In 1992 the U.S. Congress passed the Residential Lead-Based Paint Hazard Reduction Act to require disclosure of known information on lead-based paint and lead-based paint hazards before the sale or lease of most housing built before 1978. Lead-based paint was banned for residential use in 1978.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) reports that around “three-quarters of the nation’s housing stock built before 1978 — approximately 64 million dwellings — contain some lead-based paint.” In March 2001, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) published a field guide about lead paint safety, noting that approximately 98 percent of the homes built before 1940 probably contained lead-based paints.

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