Although it is important to be informed of what is going on, plaintiffs do not need to be concerned. Johnson & Johnson’s exceptional talc powder cancer allegations aren’t going away anytime soon. What’s more likely is that you’ll have fewer options for how to resolve your lawsuit and where to get the money for your settlement.
If you’re a plaintiff in a talc cancer case, the news that talc powder product maker Johnson & Johnson filed for bankruptcy in mid-October should give you pause. What does this entail for the claim you’re working on to receive the money your family deserves?
It can be difficult to make sense of what’s really going on with the Johnson & Johnson bankruptcy situation. On October 14, 2021, Law 360 reported that J&J has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy for LTL Management, the new subsidiary in which the company holds its talc liabilities.
Rumors about this move have been in the headlines for months. Talc powder cancer claims have been going on for years.
In 2020, Johnson & Johnson spent $4 billion on litigation expenses associated with “talc related reserves and certain settlements,” according to J&J’s 2020 Annual Report. The 2020 fiscal year was “unfavorable” compared to 2019, J&J reported, and these expenses are likely part of the reason.
Other setbacks for the company, talc-related and otherwise, occurred in 2021. Forbes called the refusal of the United States Supreme Court to hear the company’s appeal of a 2018 talc powder ovarian cancer trial ruling that awarded $2.1 billion to 20 plaintiffs “yet another crisis” for J&J. (The original ruling had included 22 plaintiffs and amounted to $4.69 billion, but a Missouri appeals court had reduced the award and removed certain plaintiffs from the case in 2019, according to The Hill).
As of August 2021, J&J was facing more than 30,000 talc powder cancer lawsuits, according to Reuters. While most of these claims alleged that Johnson & Johnson’s talcum powder products had caused ovarian cancer, some cases were instead filed over mesothelioma, a rare type of cancer closely linked to asbestos exposure.
When rumors first surfaced that Johnson & Johnson was reportedly considering a potential plan for restructuring and bankruptcy, claimants were understandably worried. In August 2021, Reuters reported that plaintiffs in talc cancer claims felt that, if the company moved forward with restructuring, it would be “taking steps that they believe could shift valuable assets out of their reach.”
The News Highlights
- What Would Johnson & Johnson Bankruptcy Mean for Talc Cancer Lawsuit Plaintiffs? | Console and Associates, P.C
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