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IPFS News Link • Lawsuits

J&J will pay $700 million to 42 states in talc baby powder lawsuit, officials announce

•, by: Ethan Huff

Officials say the money will settle allegations that J&J's talc products contain asbestos, a chemical linked to cancer. The controversy led to J&J changing its baby powder formula to starch made from maize, or corn, which is typically genetically modified (GMO).

Despite its safe use for more than a century, talc has become a target of litigation because depending on where it is mined – talc is a natural mineral – it could contain fibers of asbestos.

In its settlement agreement, J&J did not include any admission of guilt for wrongdoing. The settlement agreement's judicial approval is also still pending.

"We have reached a landmark settlement with Johnson & Johnson ensuring that the company will abide by the law and take effective steps to protect consumers from potentially hazardous ingredients," announced Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton.

"I'm proud to lead this coalition of 43 attorneys general to stand up for consumers' health and truth in marketing."

Billions awarded over talc cancer claims

Over the years, J&J has faced a spate of lawsuits claiming that its products are linked to serious and occasionally fatal illness. Back in April, a Chicago grand jury awarded the family of a woman named Theresa Garcia who passed away from mesothelioma $45 million because she regularly used the company's talc-based products.

Back in 2020, J&J was ordered to pay $186 million to four plaintiffs out of New Jersey who claimed that they developed cancer because of J&J's talc-based products.

Earlier this month, a woman in Oregon was awarded $260 million in damages after she claimed that J&J's talc-based products caused her to develop mesothelioma.

On top of all this, there are tens of thousands of additional plaintiffs who are suing J&J claiming that their serious health conditions were caused by their use of products containing talc.

Shareholders of J&J have also sued the company for allegedly misleading them about the alleged health risks of using talc products.