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Upholstered furniture sold in California is about to get safer, especially for children.

On Jan. 1, new state flammability standards will take effect and all new sofas, love seats and chairs must be fully compliant by the end of 2014, according to the California Department of Consumer Affairs.

The regulations are the first update in 40 years. They toss out a requirement that foam cushions be treated with flame-retardant chemicals that studies have linked to cancer and reproductive defects…

Marc Lifsher