A jury in another state recently awarded $550 million in damages to 22 women who sued the baby powder manufacturer Johnson & Johnson. In addition to this decision, the jury also dropped a bombshell punitive damages award of over $4 billion.
Johnson & Johnson has vowed to appeal this verdict and has pointed to its past record of defeating jury verdicts on appeal. The company believes that the trial was unfair in part because these women were allowed to use a court in one particular state, in a forum that was not friendly to the company, even though they were from around the country. At least one of the plaintiffs was from Georgia.
At issue is that the plaintiffs claim the baby powder sickened them because it contained asbestos. The manufacturer denies this allegation Over 9,000 women have sued the company nationwide, blaming their baby powder for their ovarian cancer. Again, Johnson & Johnson maintains that its product is perfectly safe.
While baby powder is not well-known as a dangerous or even potent medicine, the reality is that, like any medical product, it comes with the possibility that something can be wrong with it.
As in the case of other medical products, manufacturers are held strictly liable for the damages their products cause if it turns out the product is unreasonably dangerous for any reason. In this case, the allegation is that Johnson & Johnson knew the product included toxic chemicals known to cause cancer.
Georgia residents who feel they have been hurt by baby powder or, for that matter, other over-the-counter drugs, medical products and remedies should not hesitate to consider filing a medical product liability case. Such a case can end with compensation being awarded for things like medical expenses, lost wages and the like.