Johnson & Johnson is a multinational company manufacturing numerous well-known personal care brands, medical devices, and medications. In 2020, the company pulled its talcum-based baby powder off shelves after facing a flood of lawsuits alleging that its baby powder causes cancer.
Recent research has linked the use of talcum powder to various cancers, including ovarian cancer, mesothelioma, and others. If you developed cancer or another significant health issue due to the prolonged use of baby powder, you could have a case. You might be able to file or join in a Johnson & Johnson class-action lawsuit. Get started now and fill out our form for a free case review.
What Is Talcum Powder?
Talcum powder contains a naturally occurring mineral that can absorb moisture, keep skin dry, cut down on friction, and potentially prevent rashes. Talcum powder is used in a variety of cosmetic and personal care products such as:
- Baby powder
- Adult body and facial powders
- Make-up products
- Foods and vitamin supplements (as an anti-caking agent)
The Potential Health Concern with Talcum Powder
Talcum powders can contain some naturally occurring asbestos. Asbestos has been linked to a variety of devastating diseases such as mesothelioma, ovarian cancer, lung cancer, laryngeal cancer, asbestosis, COPD, and many other conditions.
Those who used talcum powder on a daily basis over many years, or came into daily contact with the substance at their workplace, may have an increased risk for developing various asbestos-related diseases.
Johnson & Johnson Talcum Powder Controversy
Baby-powder manufacturer Johnson & Johnson has been the subject of litigation for many years, with victims alleging that they developed cancer and other conditions due to prolonged use of Johnson & Johnson talcum powder products.
While the company maintained that their products are asbestos-free, the reality paints a different picture. According to Reuters, Johnson & Johnson knew for years that some of their talcum powder products were contaminated with potentially deadly asbestos particles yet failed to discontinue the products or warn customers of the dangers. Moreover, the company reportedly kept this information not only from consumers but also from regulators.
In the last decade, Johnson & Johnson has had to battle thousands of lawsuits linking their baby powder to deadly diseases. In 2018, a St. Louis jury awarded $4.7 billion to 22 women who argued that asbestos in talcum powder had caused their ovarian cancer.
Class-Action Lawsuits Explained
When a personal care and pharmaceutical giant such as Johnson & Johnson brings a defective product or dangerous drug on the market, many different individuals using a certain product can suffer the same harm or a similar condition as a result. Class-action lawsuits arise when a group of harmed people suffering the same or similar damages (called plaintiffs) come together to sue a defendant, in this case, Johnson & Johnson.
The Benefits of Class-Action Lawsuits
A class-action lawsuit can have a number of benefits for victims. Firstly, if your damages are relatively small, an individual personal injury lawsuit may simply not be worth the time and expense. However, a class-action lawsuit can be advantageous due to strength in numbers. Some class actions can have hundreds of plaintiffs. When a company is faced with a large number of claimants, potentially creating considerable negative publicity, the defendant may be more motivated to settle.
Class-Action Lawsuits Are Stress-Free
Unless you are the lead plaintiff in a class-action lawsuit, you do not have to do anything to fight for what you deserve and can simply wait for the outcome of the case. In a class-action lawsuit, the lead plaintiff bringing the case, together with the attorney, will fight for the best interests of the “class” of plaintiffs.
How Does a Johnson & Johnson Class-Action Lawsuit Work?
The lead plaintiff in a class-action lawsuit usually files suit on behalf of the entire class against the defendant, Johnson & Johnson. If the claim is won, all plaintiffs will receive the same amount in damages, regardless of their injuries, medical expenses, and other damages.
What Are the Lead Plaintiff’s Responsibilities?
The lead plaintiff is typically the person who started the suit. They suffer from similar damages or injuries as the rest of the class of plaintiffs. Responsibilities of the lead plaintiff include:
- Hiring an attorney for legal representation
- Filing the lawsuit together with the attorney
- Attending court proceedings and hearings
- Deciding whether to accept or refuse a settlement
- Representing the class of plaintiffs
The lead plaintiff, in recognition of their time and effort commitment, can in some cases receive a higher settlement amount than the other plaintiffs in a class-action lawsuit.
You Could Join a Talcum Powder Class-Action Lawsuit
According to the National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI), a 2008 study suggests a link between women using talcum powder and facing an increased risk of developing ovarian cancer. Therefore, if you or a loved one used talcum powder and developed ovarian cancer, mesothelioma, or another asbestos-related disease, you could potentially join a class-action lawsuit.
Other Johnson & Johnson Class-Action Lawsuits
Johnson & Johnson has been fighting several class-action lawsuits in recent years, including but not limited to:
Transvaginal Mesh Lawsuits
Pelvic mesh devices, also called transvaginal mesh implants, can treat pelvic organ prolapse and stress urinary incontinence in women. Johnson & Johnson had to pay millions in damages to tens of thousands of affected women due to deceptive marketing of the product. Women who have had to face medical complications due to Johnson & Johnson’s mesh implants could join a class-action lawsuit and potentially recover compensation.
Metal Hip Implant Lawsuits
Johnson & Johnson has been facing thousands of lawsuits and settled billions of dollars in damages for its defective metal-on-metal hip implants manufactured by subsidiary company DePuy. Metal-on-metal hip implants have been known to cause various complications, such as:
- Chronic hip pain
- Neurological issues
- Cardiovascular problems
- The need for corrective surgery
If you or a loved one suffered complications from a defective metal-on-metal hip implant, you could potentially pursue damages.
While some class-action lawsuits have concluded, many are still ongoing. Your next best step if you believe you have a case or qualify to join in a class-action lawsuit is to contact us and let us walk you through your options.
When to File an Individual Lawsuit
Filing a class-action lawsuit is not always the best step if you have suffered harm due to the actions of an unethical corporation. For example, if you have a certain injury that few other plaintiffs have suffered, the class may not be big enough for a class-action lawsuit.
Moreover, there can be other disadvantages, particularly if you suffered significant injuries and damages. Since all plaintiffs in a class-action lawsuit generally receive the same amount of compensation, class-action lawsuits may not suit those who suffered more damages than the typical plaintiff in the class.
If you suffered a life-changing injury or a loved one died due to the negligence of a company, you could be entitled to considerable damages. In this case, an individual lawsuit would most likely be a better choice. However, you do not have to determine your best next steps on your own. One of our experienced class-action lawsuit attorneys can assess your case and offer legal advice so you can make an informed decision.