Nearly 40,000 women with ovarian cancer have filed claims alleging they used Johnson & Johnson Talcum Baby Powder routinely, especially in “intimate” areas for hygiene, before receiving a diagnosis of ovarian cancer, often in an advanced stage. The talc has been found to contain cancer-causing asbestos.
Talc lawyers, the women and the families they represent, are infuriated by delayed court proceedings in the lawsuit. Last October, J&J made a business decision to launch a controversial “bankruptcy” scheme called the Texas Two-Step that has held up proceedings for 11 months and counting. The move puts corporate finances above helping thousands of women who are dismally ill.
Please understand that a settlement may be reached in or out of bankruptcy – and it is not too late to join the Talc lawsuit for compensation!
Under the strategy, J&J formed a spinoff called LTL Management, where it dumped unconfirmed assets (speculated at $2 billion) for the sole purpose of funneling talc claims. Immediately after creating LTL, Johnson placed it into bankruptcy.
Anytime a party in a lawsuit files for bankruptcy, the action suspends court proceedings in an ongoing case.
The bankruptcy was transferred from North Carolina to New Jersey (J&J headquarters) where Judge Michael Kaplan allowed the maneuver to go forward in a February 2022 ruling. In March, however, Kaplan asked the federal appeals court to weigh in on the case, circumventing the traditional district court appeal process.
Despite the Two-Step’s success in prior corporate attempts to protect assets and sidestep mass tort liability, J&J and LTL are not home free yet: In May, the Third U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Philadelphia said it would revisit “an earlier decision that backed J&J’s use of the tactic.”
Talc lawyers have repeatedly sought a dismissal of the bankruptcy, but none has been granted. If the maneuver is successful, thousands of plaintiffs may receive less compensation but they will still likely receive a payout if an agreement is reached – despite Johnson’s best attempts [and billions of dollars spent] not to pay.
The New Yorker on September 12 reported that J&J offered $4-5 billion to negotiate a settlement last spring after losing a painful verdict, but the tide turned: Johnson won three consecutive verdicts over the summer and took the deal off the table.
By October, the divisional merger was underway. The assets Johnson has dumped into LTL amount to far less than $4-5 billion, but Johnson has indicated it could/may pad LTL funding. The corporation is valued at $50 billion.
The most valuable assets were always kept separate in the original entity (referred to as Johnson & Johnson Consumer Inc. (or Old JJCI), presumably out of reach of Talc lawyers and cancer plaintiffs. Sticking to plan, Johnson tweaked its former title, technically forming New JJCI and dissolving Old JJCI in one stroke. New JJCI hopes to be released from all charges against LTL Management.
“How the Third Circuit will rule is anyone’s guess, but one way or the other, the fact that the court has to intervene clearly demonstrates the incompatibility of the mass litigation model with the concept of ‘justice,’” wrote George Christian of the Texas Civil Justice League, August 23, 2022.
Our team at A Case for Women is counting on the integrity of the Third Circuit Court to toss J&J’s “bankruptcy” on grounds of bad faith and abuse of the bankruptcy code. Here’s to a speedy federal hearing and favorable Plaintiff outcome! Let’s all keep our fingers crossed!
Contact us immediately to begin your Talc claim.