Talc cancer settlements this year just reached a new record after a St. Louis jury awarded 22 plaintiffs $2.12 billion in damages. Each ovarian cancer plaintiff won at least $25 million in actual and more than $165 million in punitive damages. Johnson & Johnson’s stunning talc cancer trial loss is the third ruling this year with a multimillion-dollar payout for victims.
Internal Documents Produced at Latest Talc Cancer Trial Shows Asbestos Concerns Going Back to 1974
The most recent talc cancer ruling came after the plaintiffs’ lawyer, Mark Lanier, produced internal J&J documents at trial. The company’s memo stated, “Our very preliminary calculation indicates that substantial asbestos can be allowed safely in a baby powder.” Co-defendant Imerys Talc America, J&J’s supplier, reached a confidential settlement before trial proceedings started. That company agreed to pay at least $5 million to settle all 22 talc cancer claims out of court. Johnson & Johnson’s spokeswoman, Carol Goodrich, said in an email that the company plans to appeal this latest ruling.
Claims Involving Mesothelioma: A Growing Trend?
While this latest talc cancer verdict grabbed headlines, it’s actually the third jury ruling against J&J in 2018. Two prior talc cancer cases linking asbestos to mesothelioma also ordered massive payouts for plaintiffs, including:
- Stephen Lanzo — After lifelong Johnson’s Baby Powder use, the 46-year-old banker allegedly developed terminal mesothelioma in 2016. During Lanzo’s talc cancer trial, jurors heard expert testimony from scientist William Longo and environmental health consultant James Webber. Both experts testified they found asbestos in more than half the 32 talcum powder samples J&J submitted for testing. And Lanzo’s own lymph node tissue samples also contained asbestos fibers, according to court documents. A New Jersey jury awarded Lanzo $37 million in actual and $80 million in punitive damages.
- Joanne Anderson — An avid bowler, 68-year-old Anderson sued J&J and supplier Imerys SA in 2017 after developing mesothelioma. The plaintiff stated that regular Johnson’s Baby Powder use over a 25-year period led to her talc cancer diagnosis. Experts at Anderson’s trial estimated she inhaled the product more than 10,000 times while powdering her hands and shoes. In April 2018, a Los Angeles jury awarded Anderson $21.75 million in actual and $4 million in punitive damages.
With more than 17,000 talc cancer cases still pending against J&J, the company’s courtroom fight is far from over.
How Victims Can Get the Justice and Compensation They Deserve
If you or a loved one used baby powder regularly and then developed talc cancer, you may qualify for compensation. In fact, you can answer just three questions online to check your eligibility for a significant cash settlement. To get started, fill out your free talcum powder claim review form today. Once you confirm your claim’s eligibility, an experienced lawyer in your area will call to discuss your case. This free, no-obligation phone call is the first step in getting the justice and compensation you deserve from the manufacturer. Deciding whether to proceed or use the same lawyer after your free, confidential consultation is entirely up to you.
Lori Polemenakos is Director of Consumer Content and SEO strategist for LeadingResponse, a legal marketing company. An award-winning journalist, writer and editor based in Dallas, Texas, she's produced articles for major brands such as Match.com, Yahoo!, MSN, AOL, Xfinity, Mail.com, and edited several published books. Since 2016, she's published hundreds of articles about Social Security disability, workers' compensation, veterans' benefits, personal injury, mass tort, auto accident claims, bankruptcy, employment law and other related legal issues.