The Supreme Court of Missouri May Have Reasons To Overturn The $2 billion Baby Powder Ovarian Cancer Award
Each of the 22 plaintiffs had different and unique histories
Saturday, March 6, 2021 - To give you an idea of the importance of the allegations that Johnson's Baby Powder is contaminated with asbestos and other dangerous fibers, the Supreme Court of Missouri will soon weigh in on the matter. The case appeals a recent court decision to award 22 women with ovarian cancer the reduced sum of 2.1 billion dollars. The jury award consisted of $500 million in compensatory damages and $1.6 billion in punitive damages, highlighting that for decades Johnson & Johnson executives knew that their talc supply was contaminated with asbestos and lied to government regulators and consumers. Johnson & Johnson discontinued selling their iconic brand of baby powder in all of North America and has set aside close to $4 billion for 2021 legal expenses. Johnson & Johnson may make a settlement offer similar to the one made in 2020, where 1000 women with ovarian cancer received $100 million. Over 25,000 women with ovarian cancer have filed suit against Johnson & Johnson, claiming that using Baby Powder on their genitals regularly and for many years caused their ovarian cancer.
The case under consideration by the Supreme Court claims that it was unfair to group all 22 women since each had unique circumstances and histories. Each woman lived in a different part of the country, worked in a different occupation in a separate environment, had a unique family medical history, and had made different lifestyle choices such as smoking and drinking or not, or eating healthily or not. The plaintiff's attorneys are accused of creating a super plaintiff that overlooked the differences listed above and more. Also, Johnson & Johnson's appeal claims that grouping such a large number of women together as plaintiffs create an inference of causation. MesoWatch.com described the Supreme Court petition put forth by Johnson & Johnson thusly: "The jury was confronted with 22 different plaintiffs with dramatically different cancer-risk profiles, prognoses, and talc use. The mass trial papered over these differences, allowing the jury to overlook significant weaknesses in individual plaintiffs' claims - and to infer causation from the number of plaintiffs before it."
The Missouri Supreme Court hearing is the furtherance of an appeal that failed in 2020 when the Missouri Appeals Court upheld a 2018 jury verdict against Johnson & Johnson and awarded 22 women with ovarian cancer $4,69 billion. The appeals court reduced the $4.69 billion in damages to $2.1 billion, the largest Johnson's Baby Powder cancer award to date. The appeals court's reason for the reduction of the award is because 17 of the 22 women were not Missouri residents and should not have been included in the original decision. Johnson & Johnson has been successful in the past in having cases overturned based on a plaintiff's lack of Missouri residency. Notwithstanding the appeals and the potential for setbacks, women with ovarian cancer and men and women with mesothelioma are encouraged to speak with a baby powder cancer lawyer if they have used Johnson's Baby Powder regularly and have developed the disease.