A jury in St. Louis just delivered the largest verdict against Johnson & Johnson in the talcum powder trials. There have been around 2,400 lawsuits filed against the company by people claiming that using their talc-powder caused ovarian cancer and other illnesses.
In this recent case, a Virginia woman, Ms. Slemp, sued after developing ovarian cancer. She was using the Johnson & Johnson Baby Powder for feminine hygiene and had for several decades prior to being diagnosed. The St. Louis jury awarded her $110 million. This is the largest verdict to be rendered against J&J for their talc-powder thus far. Four prior trials resulted in verdicts of $197 million in total.
Ms. Slemp was diagnosed with ovarian cancer in 2012 and has undergone chemotherapy. Since then, the cancer has also spread to her liver.
The bulk of the verdict, $105 million, came in the form of punitive damages. This is a type of financial award that a jury will often use to punish the negligent party and encourage them to put an end to their dangerous practices. The other $5.4 million was compensatory damages awarded to Ms. Slemp to cover things like medical bills and other expenses.
Johnson & Johnson Likely Ignored the Evidence
One reason the jury likely awarded such high punitive damages was because evidence was presented that Johnson & Johnson had scientific proof linking the use of talcum powder products to an increased risk for developing cancer. They continued to sell the products anyway and without warning the public of the dangers. In the eyes of a jury, this makes them grossly negligent and ripe for large verdicts being rendered in the future.
While there is no guarantee what will happen in these cases going forward, it is highly probably that Johnson & Johnson will continue losing in court. They have lost over four major trials and only succeeded in one. Time will tell if they will keep fighting these cases or simply choose to settle the remaining lawsuits.
File Your Case
If you believe that using Johnson & Johnson talcum powder products has caused you to develop cancer, it is critical that you hire an attorney and file your lawsuit as soon as possible. Without knowing if or when the company will move to settle the cases, you want to have yours already filed.
To discuss your case and your legal options call The Higgins Firm at 1-800-705-2121. The consultation is entirely free of charge.