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$417 Million Talc Cancer Verdict Against Johnson & Johnson Tossed Away By California Judge

$417 Million Talc Cancer Verdict Against Johnson & Johnson Tossed Away By California Judge
In a lawsuit by a woman who claimed she developed ovarian cancer after using its talc-based products like Johnson’s Baby Powder for feminine hygiene. On Friday a California judge threw out a $417 million verdict against Johnson & Johnson.
There have been several accusations from women and family members against Johnson & Johnson, accusing the company of not adequately warning consumers about the cancer risks of its talc-based products and the latest ruling by Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Maren Nelson marked the latest setback facing such women and family members.
Awarding California resident Eva Echeverria $70 million in compensatory damages and $347 million in punitive damages, the decision followed a jury’s decision in August to hit J&J with the largest verdict to date in the litigation.
J&J’s request for a new trial was granted on Friday as Nelson reversed the jury verdict. The August trial had resulted in excessive damages against the corporate because of errors and insufficient evidence on both sides and the trial was underpinned by such faults, Nelson said.
He would file an appeal immediately, Mark Robinson, who represented the woman in her lawsuit, said in a statement.
“We will continue to fight on behalf of all women who have been impacted by this dangerous product,” he said.
J&J, in a statement, said that it will continue to defend itself in additional trials and added that it was pleased with the verdict.
There also had been misconduct of the jury during the trial, the judge in the current case also added.
three members of the 12-person jury who voted against finding the company liable were improperly excluded from determining damages, declarations by two jurors after the trial showed, J&J said.
Asserting talc-related claims, the company faces, J&J says. Missouri, where J&J has faced five trials and California, where Echeverria’s case was the first to go to trial, are the places where many of those cases are from.
Juries issued verdicts totaling $307 million have been passed in the Missouri litigation which has led to four verdicts against J&J. The company has only won one trial.
But after the Supreme Court issued a ruling in June that limited where personal injury lawsuits could be filed, the Missouri cases, which have largely been brought by out-of-state plaintiffs, have faced jurisdictional questions.
On Tuesday, a Missouri appellate court threw out a $72 million verdict by a jury in February 2016 to the family of a deceased Alabama woman after ruling the case should not have been tried in St. Louis.

Christopher J. Mitchell

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