Authored by: Ollie Lammers
According to Law.com, Johnson & Johnson recently filed for bankruptcy under a new subsidiary, LTL Management LLC. The company filing bankruptcy allows for shifting legal liability over its talc-based baby powder.
The company has faced many lawsuits over the last few years alleging their talc-based baby powder causes cancer. The plaintiffs' bar is concerned that the company is filing bankruptcy to avoid spending money on legal fees and paying victims.
The company would have a trust created to pay out victims through current and future tort claims with a $2 billion trust fund.
The company has about 38,000 ovarian cancer cases and 430 mesothelioma lawsuits pending against them. Johnson & Johnson would be estimated to pay out $367.1 million if they lost the cases pending against them.
Some plaintiff lawyers have petitioned courts to halt the anticipated bankruptcy filing to prevent their clients from being impacted.
Johnson & Johnson has not admitted liability despite scientific evidence proving their talc-based baby powder causes either ovarian cancer or mesothelioma. The company claims they continue to face an "unrelenting assault by the plaintiff trial bar."
This year, the company has won four ovarian cancer trials, but their brief filed with the bankruptcy petition claimed it could face hundreds of millions of dollars in defense costs alone. Johnson & Johnson has lost other cases to plaintiffs that have consistently awarded tens of millions of dollars.
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