As reported by Law360 a Mississippi state judge has denied an attempt by Johnson & Johnson J&J to throw out a first-of-its-kind class action injury lawsuit filed by the state’s attorney general. The suit alleges the pharmaceutical giant is putting tens of thousands of women at risk by failing to disclose that the use of its talcum powder products can lead to ovarian cancer.
In his order, Judge DeWayne Thomas denied a motion for summary judgment brought by J&J along with Valeant Pharmaceuticals, the distributor of J&J’s “Shower to Shower” scented talc product. The two companies argued that refusing to put warning labels on their talc products did not constitute a violation of the Mississippi Consumer Protection Act, because the MCPA does not cover cosmetics labeling.
However, Judge Thomas wrote there were “clearly material issues” of dispute on that question that cannot be resolved via a summary dismissal of the case.
Originally filed in August of 2014, the suit presents allegations of false advertising and insufficient labeling by J&J and Valeant and accuses the companies of misrepresenting the benefits and risks of the talc products they sold in the state. The Mississippi attorney general claimed the companies failed to inform the state’s residents about scientific research linking the perineal use of talc with an increased risk of ovarian cancer. This connection has led to a flood of lawsuits against J&J in recent years.
The lawsuit also sites internal company documents that reveal that J&J targeted talc sales specifically at African-American and Hispanic women, even as it was aware of studies that detailed higher rates of ovarian cancer in these groups as compared to women of other ethnicities.
The complaint notes that with Mississippi’s population consisting of near 40 percent African-American and Hispanic residents, this makes the companies’ behavior even more egregious in the state.
Lieff Cabraser represents women who believe their ovarian cancer was caused by long-term use of talc products containing undisclosed lethal asbestos. If you, a friend, or a family member are a long-time (6 years or more) user of talcum powder products made by Johnson & Johnson or another talc product manufacturer, and have received a diagnosis of ovarian cancer, you have the right to seek fair compensation. Please call us today at 1 800 541-7358 or visit our Talcum Powder Ovarian Cancer Injuries page to contact Wendy Fleishman or Tiseme Zegeye about your talc injury case.
We will help you gather the information and file the claims needed to seek recompense for any injuries, suffering, or related harm, and we will review your claim for free, confidentially, and with no obligation on your part.
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