A recent ruling by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit has allowed thousands of women and family members with talc-related legal cases against healthcare giant Johnson & Johnson (J&J) to move forward. This is a significant victory for victims seeking fairness and justice in the face of an aggressive legal strategy by J&J that centered around bankruptcy.
J&J’s use of a bankruptcy strategy known as the “Texas Two-Step” involved consolidating all talc litigation liabilities in a shell corporation, protecting billions of dollars in assets of its consumer division and corporate parent. This strategy was supported by federal bankruptcy court rulings, which issued an injunction in November 2021, stopping all litigation.
However, the U.S. Court of Appeals found that the bankruptcy of J&J’s shell subsidiary, LTL, was not filed in good faith, and the bankruptcy petition should be dismissed. This decision voids the injunctive stay that had put some 38,000 legal cases on hold, allowing plaintiffs to move forward with lawsuits alleging that J&J knew for years that its Johnson’s Baby Powder and Shower to Shower products were contaminated with carcinogenic asbestos.
J&J’s latest attempts to discredit plaintiffs’ expert witnesses are also expected to be thwarted by the bankruptcy’s dismissal. In December and January, LTL utilized bankruptcy procedures to file complaints in adversary proceedings against four plaintiffs’ expert witnesses who testified in support of claims against J&J’s cosmetic talc products. These experts all withstood Daubert challenges, where courts validated their scientific methodology, and all have an extensive number of peer-reviewed scientific publications.
If you or a loved one suspect that you may have a legal claim regarding talc products against J&J, you can reach out to the accomplished product liability attorneys at Morris, Andrews, Talmadge & Driggers, LLC by calling (888) 694-0174. Simply give us a call or submit a form online, and we will be more than happy to assist you with your concerns.