A New Jersey state jury recently handed down a substantial $37.3 million verdict to a group of plaintiffs who claim they developed mesothelioma cancer from years of using talcum powder products that the defendants allegedly knew contained asbestos fibers. The jury handed down the asbestos cancer verdict after two months of testimony, deciding that pharmaceutical and cosmetics giant Johnson & Johnson knowingly developed and marketed a dangerous product to consumers but provided no warning labels to consumers about the risks.
According to the talcum powder cancer lawsuit, filed in a Middlesex, New Jersey Superior Court, the four plaintiffs all developed serious forms of cancer as a result of their parents using talc-based products, such as Baby Powder and Shower to Shower, on them as children. The trial took place in Brunswick, New Jersey, the headquarters for Johnson & Johnson, which currently faces thousands of similar trials in state and federal courts across the country.
Attorneys for the plaintiff presented evidence to the jury appearing to show that executives at Johnson & Johnson knew for decades about the presence of asbestos fibers in the talc used to create its iconic Baby Powder and Shower to Shower. The plaintiffs highlighted internal company tests, which showed the presence of asbestos in the talc, discussed in the memos as proof the company knowingly sold a dangerous product without warning innocent victims.
This is also the second plaintiffs verdict in talcum powder mesothelioma cancer lawsuit trails. In 2018, a Middlesex County jury handed down an even larger $117 million verdict in favor of plaintiffs who claim Johnson & Johnson’s talcum powder products caused their rare forms of cancer. In that trial, the plaintiffs, an investment banker, claimed asbestos fibers in Baby Powder caused him to develop mesothelioma cancer.
Jurors in this latest case will reconvene in a short amount of time to decide what, if any, punitive damages should be awarded to the plaintiffs. Punitive damages are a special type of damages juries in some cases may hand down if enough evidence has been presented to show that the defendants acted in a specifically negligent manner. Juries in a St. Louis asbestos talcum powder lawsuit handed down a verdict to 20 plaintiffs which included $4.7 billion in punitive damages.
Johson & Johnson faces an estimated 15,000 talcum powder asbestos lawsuits across the country over claims plaintiffs developed serious forms of cancer, including mesothelioma. The disease is a rare form of cancer directly linked to asbestos fibers. Mesothelioma patients do not show symptoms for anywhere from 20 years to 50 years after exposure.
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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.