After a year that saw juries hand down a number of substantial plaintiffs verdicts in asbestos cancer lawsuits, pharmaceutical and cosmetics giant Johnson & Johnson and its supplier Imerys Talc USA are slated to see their highest number of such cases over the next 12 months. Imerys has already collapsed and filed for bankruptcy protection under the mounting legal and financial trouble. After a St. Louis jury handed down a $4.69 billion verdict to 22 female plaintiffs in 2019, this year could pose even more legal and financial trouble for the companies, with the group scheduled to defendant their actions in front of three times as many juries than the previous year.
Four trials scheduled in 2019 will take place in the same Missouri state court where jurors handed down their multi-billion dollar verdict and several more will take place in venues considered to be friendly to plaintiffs. One trial in August has 38 plaintiffs, setting the stage for potentially an even larger verdict than before. Since cases began going to trial in 2016, juries in California, New Jersey, and Missouri have handed down more than $5 billion in compensation to asbestos exposure victims.
An estimated 12,000 talcum powder cancer lawsuits remain outstanding and some legal experts believe it could cost Johnson & Johnson as much as $20 billion to settle all the claims and avoid any further trials. A recent Reuters report detailed allegations that Johnson & Johnson knew for decades about the risk of asbestos contamination in its talc-based products, but did nothing to warn consumers about the risks, even going as far as to provide misleading information to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in the 1970s.
While talc itself does not contain asbestos, the two are both naturally occurring minerals and are often found in deposits side by side one another. If companies do not take proper precautions, talc could become contaminated with asbestos and lead to debilitating health conditions with serious repercussions.
Plaintiffs allege that as a result of their exposure to asbestos in talc products manufactured by Johnson & Johnson, they developed serious forms of cancer, including mesothelioma, which is a rare and deadly form of lung cancer. Mesothelioma develops in the thin tissue surrounding the lungs and can spread to other vital organs like the heart.
By filing a mesothelioma cancer lawsuit, victims can recover compensation for their damages such as medical bills, lost wages, and the pain and suffering of living with the disease. Furthermore, these lawsuits help hold large corporations accountable for their careless actions and send a message that society will not tolerate corporate greed putting its own interests above the public good.
Nationwide Mesothelioma Lawyer
If you or a loved one were diagnosed with mesothelioma, contact our office to speak to one of our experienced mesothelioma attorneys about your situation. Our office can help investigate your case and determine if compensation can be sought from negligent parties to help pay for your medical treatment to help you and your family live a more comfortable life.