Johnson & Johnson once offered woman $1.3M to drop talcum powder lawsuit
Medical giant Johnson & Johnson once offered a woman $1.3 million to drop a talcum powder lawsuit alleging that the company’s product caused cancer. Diane Berg filed the first baby powder lawsuit in 2009 after using the product for most of her life and developing ovarian cancer at age 49.
In 2013, J & J offered Berg $1.3 million to drop her baby powder lawsuit and sign a confidentiality clause saying she would stop talking about the cancer risk associated with the product. Berg refused and continued her lawsuit alleging gross negligence and fraud. Berg pointed out that the product did not contain any warning of an increased risk of cancer.
A South Dakota jury confirmed the association between talcum powder and ovarian cancer, but did not award her any money. However, two St. Louis judges awarded two families a total of $127 million in their talcum powder lawsuits. In one lawsuit, J & J was found guilty of negligence, conspiracy, and failure to warn women of the increased risk of cancer associated with the product.