March 27, 2019
On March 27, 2019, Weil, along with co-counsel from Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP, secured a complete defense jury verdict for Johnson & Johnson in the mass tort talc litigation. Following four weeks of trial in New Jersey state court, the jury returned a unanimous, 6-0 verdict after deliberating for less than 25 minutes.
The plaintiff in this case, represented by the Lanier Law Firm, alleged that exposure to asbestos in J&J’s baby powder contributed to him developing cancer. This lawsuit is one of many cases currently pending in courts around the United States, in which plaintiffs allege that the use of talcum powder caused lung cancer or ovarian cancer.
Throughout the trial, Weil focused on a few key themes, including J&J’s commitment to product safety, which mandated extensive testing, under the oversight of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and other scientific experts, to ensure that its baby powder was safe and did not contain asbestos. The Weil team also rigorously and effectively cross-examined the plaintiff’s experts, who have repeatedly testified for plaintiffs in talc litigation, and ultimately persuaded the jury to reject their testimony entirely – as evidenced by the jury’s finding that the plaintiff was not exposed to asbestos in J&J’s baby powder.
This outcome is particularly noteworthy as it follows on the heels of another complete defense verdict Weil secured for J&J in October 2018 in a previous talc trial in New Jersey. Please read this announcement for more information on that victory.