What the Johnson and Johnson Verdict Tells Us About Dangerous Products
Earlier in August, a California jury entered a verdict in excess of $400 million against Johnson & Johnson after finding that the company’s baby powder led to a woman’s development of ovarian cancer following her use of the powder for feminine hygiene purposes. This type of award naturally grabs headlines, and it can also lead individuals who feel they have been injured by a defective or dangerous product to believe that they, too, are entitled to their own multimillion-dollar award. These concerns should be discussed immediately with experienced counsel.
Points to Remember About Dangerous or Defective Products in California
Dangerous and defective products injure a surprisingly-high number of individuals in California each year. Many of these individuals, however, do not recover millions of dollars in damages. Here are just a few of the reasons why:
- Manufacturers are required to make reasonable efforts to assure safety: But there may be no liability for a company that manufactures a product that causes injury to another when the company really expended reasonable efforts to ensure that its product was free from defects and/or that customers would be adequately warned of the dangers of the product.
- A company’s bad behavior matters: One of the reasons why the Johnson & Johnson verdict is so high is because of the suggestion that the company had known that its product would present a health risk to women, but declined to issue any warnings or take any remedial action. Companies who learn of a product’s dangerous tendencies and who then take prompt action to correct the situation will usually fare better (in that any verdict awards will likely be lower).
- The nature of your injuries matters, too: Injuries and harm like ovarian cancer affect a person for their entire life and cause truly catastrophic harm that can include an early and painful death. One would naturally expect, therefore, that these injury victims would receive greater compensation than a victim who suffers a minor injury or some injury that is painful but from which the victim will completely recover.
- The evidence connecting the defect to injuries is required: Product liability case are not successful just because a product purchased or used contains one or more defects. There must be a sufficient amount of evidence that shows the injuries and/or losses suffered were a result of the defect.
In other words, you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries and losses that are attributable to the defect, and while a multimillion dollar recovery may not necessarily be in your future, it is important that you discuss your concerns with us as soon as possible.
Speak with Heiting & Irwin Today
If you or a loved one have been inured because of a dangerous or defective product in California, you may have legal rights and remedies available to you. Let us assist you in obtaining compensation for your injuries and losses; complete our online contact form or call (951) 682-6440 and discuss your case with us as soon as possible.