After a trial that lasted over two months, Johnson & Johnson and Imerys Talc America Inc. have been handed down a verdict that sees the companies now responsible for $37 million in compensatory damages and another $80 million in punitive damages to be paid to a New Jersey man and his family.
The lawsuit was brought by Stephen Lanzo III, 46, and his wife. Lanzo claimed that the prolonged use and inhalation of the company’s talc products lead to his cancer of the lungs. It was found that Johnson & Johnson’s popular products, including baby powder and Shower to Shower contained asbestos. At the conclusion of the trial, the New Jersey jurors concurred with the overall claims made by the Lanzo family.
Lanzo had been using the company’s products for over three decades, starting from when he was an infant and his mother would apply it on him. His use of the talc products spanned from between 1972 and 2003. The court reasoned that this exposure to the toxic minerals in Johnson & Johnson’s products contributed a substantial amount overall to Lanzo developing mesothelioma.
Johnson & Johnson and its talc supplier Imerys Talc America Inc. were both found to be liable in this case, 70 percent and 30 percent respectively. Overall, the jury award for compensatory damages came out to be $37 million in total, $30 million to Lanzo and $7 million to his wife. While the punitive damages totaled $80 million, Johnson & Johnson responsible for $55 million and Imerys $25 million.
The reasoning behind the jury’s verdict was cited as being that the products manufactured by Johnson & Johnson, with use of material from their talc supplier Imerys Talc America Inc., were sold with inadequate warning labels. Also, it was found that the products were defectively designed throughout the three decades that Lanzo used the products, leading to overwhelming evidence against the companies.
Johnson & Johnson has denied the claims and plans to appeal all decisions.
If you or a family member is the victim of mesothelioma contact an experienced attorney at the Naumes Law Group for a free consultation at 844-826-8445 or online at www.naumeslaw.com. to help you understand and fight for your rights.