Johnson & Johnson announced on Tuesday that it was offering up to $8.9 billion to resolve lawsuits accusing the company of selling baby powder that caused cancer — an allegation that J&J has repeatedly denied.
Why is this important: J&J faces tens of thousands of lawsuits from people and their survivors related to the company’s talcum powder.
Driving the news: NOT A WORD disclosed the offering on Tuesday as part of its decision to re-file its subsidiary LTL Management for Chapter 11 bankruptcy.
- The Third Circuit Court of Appeals in January denied the original Chapter 11 petition filed by LTL, the J&J subsidiary created to cover its talc liabilities and file for bankruptcy.
Details: The $8.9 billion in alleged victim payments would be made over 25 years “to resolve all current and future talc claims,” J&J said in a statement.
- The company, which originally offered $2 billion, said it “has secured commitments from more than 60,000 current claimants” to back the deal.
- J&J noted that it does not admit wrongdoing – but fighting cases “would take decades and impose significant costs” with “most plaintiffs never receiving compensation”, said Erik Haas, vice – Global President of J&J Litigation.
What they say : Law firms representing what they described as the majority of victims released a statement saying their clients supported the proposed deal.
- “This settlement will provide prompt, substantial and fair compensation to claimants who cannot afford to wait any longer for a resolution,” victims’ representatives said in a statement on Tuesday.
How it works: “All talc plaintiffs will be able to have their claims assessed and assessed within one year” of the settlement being approved by a federal judge, “ensuring a speedy and effective resolution for victims of corporate misconduct.” ‘business,’ victims’ representatives said.
- “This settlement is a testament to the tens of thousands of women who have fought cancer and the justice system to seek justice for themselves,” Watts Guerra attorney Alicia O’Neill said in a statement. “These strong women ensured that no other women were exposed to this unnecessary danger. They deserve compensation and closure.