Johnson & Johnson Moves Forward with $6.48 Billion Talc Cancer Lawsuit Settlement Proposal

Company Hopes Third Bankruptcy Filing for Subsidiary Will Facilitate Resolution

Johnson & Johnson (J&J) announced on Wednesday a proposed $6.48 billion settlement to resolve tens of thousands of lawsuits alleging its talc products cause ovarian cancer. This proposal represents the latest development in a long-running legal battle for the healthcare giant.

J&J Maintains Product Safety, Settlement Supported by Plaintiffs’ Attorneys

Despite facing numerous lawsuits, J&J maintains that its talc products are free of asbestos and do not cause cancer. The company asserts that the proposed settlement is supported by legal representatives for a majority of plaintiffs who have filed cancer lawsuits against them.

J&J Expresses Confidence in Settlement Approval

Erik Haas, J&J’s worldwide vice president of litigation, believes the pre-bankruptcy voting process will address the shortcomings of their previous attempts. J&J anticipates the deal will secure the necessary approval from 75% of outstanding claimants. This threshold would allow the bankruptcy settlement to become binding, effectively ending all current and future lawsuits and preventing individuals from opting out to pursue separate claims.

J&J Maintains Defense While Seeking Settlement Approval

J&J intends to continue defending itself in lawsuits while simultaneously seeking votes on the proposed settlement. The company emphasizes their success rate in ovarian cancer cases tried to verdict, claiming victory in 95% of such cases, including all those tried in the last six years.

J&J Reserves Funds for Talc-Related Settlements

J&J has allocated $11 billion to cover all talc-related settlements, encompassing settlements outside of bankruptcy proceedings with state attorneys general and individuals alleging asbestos-contaminated talc caused mesothelioma. The company has also addressed claims arising from the bankruptcies of their talc suppliers.