Earlier this month, the U.S. Supreme Court decided it will not consider an appeal brought by Johnson & Johnson regarding a $2.12 billion ruling in favor of 20 women who alleged that their ovarian cancer was caused by the company’s talcum powder. The verdict against the pharmaceutical giant remains intact.
The appeal came after a 2018 court ruling in favor of 22 women who claimed asbestos in Johnson & Johnson talcum powder was linked to their cases of ovarian cancer. The women alleged the company did not do enough to warn the public of the risks associated with using the product. The judge in the 2018 case ruled that Johnson & Johnson “misrepresented the safety of these products for decades” and the evidence shown at the trial demonstrated “particularly reprehensible conduct on the part of Defendants.”
Thousands of women have been named as plaintiffs in lawsuits against Johnson & Johnson dating back to 2013 that allege the company’s powder products were contaminated with asbestos and can potentially cause cancer. The International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC), a part of the World Health Organization (WHO), classifies talc that contains asbestos as “carcinogenic to humans.”
Johnson & Johnson continues to counter allegations that its baby powder is unsafe, even after a Food and Drug Administration recall of 33,000 bottles from the market in 2019 and discontinuing the use of talc in their products in 2020. Additionally, a 2016 ruling found Johnson & Johnson liable for negligence, conspiracy, and failure to warn consumers of the potential health-related hazards of using its products containing talc.
Product Liability and Manufacturer Responsibility
When a product is found to be dangerous or defective, the FDA will send warnings to companies and may issue a recall. We recently reviewed actions to take after a drug recall and remind everyone to pay attention to FDA safety alerts about medications they may be taking.
Manufacturers are responsible for informing consumers of inherent risks associated with their products and provide reasonable warnings about unanticipated dangers. Some companies have been held liable for damages even when danger was unforeseen. Product liability lawsuits help hold manufacturers and sellers of goods responsible when someone is injured or dies as a result of using a dangerous or defective product.
We take pride in protecting Florida families with the work we do at Panter, Panter & Sampedro. We believe it is important that our community knows about harmful products and has someone to turn to for help if you or a loved one has been harmed. We can help you determine if a product liability lawsuit is your best option, please contact our team for a free consultation about your case today at (305) 662-6178.
Durkee (2021, June 1) Supreme Court Won’t Hear Johnson & Johnson Challenge Of $2 Billion Baby Powder Lawsuit. Retrieved from: https://forbes.com/sites/alisondurkee/2021/06/01/supreme-court-wont-hear-johnson–johnson-challenge-of-2-billion-baby-powder-lawsuit/?sh=29b5fd873d6e
American Cancer Society. Talcum Powder and Cancer. Retrieved from: https://cancer.org/cancer/cancer-causes/talcum-powder-and-cancer.html