Signed into law in the summer of 2008, the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act (CPSIA) set new federal lead standards for products (including jewelry) intended for children age 12 and under. The lead content limit was initially set at 600 parts per milliion (ppm), or 0.06 percent. On Aug. 14, 2009, the limit dropped to 300 ppm, and it is currently 100 ppm (0.01 percent).
The 100 ppm limit applies only to jewelry made after the Aug. 14 date, thanks to a bill (H.R. 2715) passed by Congress just prior to the 100 ppm implementation. Jewelry made prior to that date must still meet the previous 300 ppm standard.