Johnson & Johnson to pay $700M to settle talcum powder claims

Johnson & Johnson to pay $700M to settle talcum powder claims

Company to stop manufacturing, selling, promoting, distributing any product containing talcum powder in US

By Ovunc Kutlu

ISTANBUL (AA) - Johnson & Johnson agreed to pay $700 million to settle claims for deceptively marketing and selling baby powder and body powder products that contained dangerous talcum powder.

The deal includes a bipartisan coalition of 42 attorneys general in the US, and New York will receive $44 million from the consent judgment with the company, New York Attorney General Letitia James said Tuesday in a statement.

The company targeted beauty salons and churches in communities of color with advertisements for years about its baby and body powder products that contained talcum powder, it said.

While talcum powder can cause serious health concerns, including ovarian cancer and lung problems, the coalition had alleged that the firm misled consumers about the safety and purity of some of its products in advertisements, it added.

"Targeting communities with cosmetic products that contain dangerous substances is not just illegal, it is very cruel," said James. "No amount of money can undo the pain caused by Johnson & Johnson’s talc-laced products, but today families can rest assured that the company is being held accountable for the harm it caused, and its dangerous products will no longer be on shelves in New York."

In addition to paying $700 million to 42 states over three years, Johnson & Johnson also agreed to permanently stop manufacturing, selling, promoting or distributing any products containing talcum powder either directly or through a third party in the US, according to the statement.

Johnson & Johnson in April 2023 agreed to pay $8.9 billion in the next 25 years to settle claims that its baby powder and other talc products cause cancer.

The company in August 2022 said it would stop the sale of its talc-based baby powder around the world starting in 2023 while it was facing almost 40,000 lawsuits from consumers.

In October 2021, the firm assigned the talc claims to its subsidiary, LTL Management, and later placed it into bankruptcy, while a US judge ruled in February 2022 that the company could use the bankruptcy system to resolve the multibillion-dollar allegations.

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