After the Supreme Court refused to step in and after proposing an $8.9 billion settlement, Johnson & Johnson has made a second attempt to put their subsidiary – LTL Management – into Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection to shield itself from tens of thousands of current talc lawsuits and from potential future litigation. Plaintiffs alleging cancer and other injuries from J&J’s contaminated talcum powder have called this second bankruptcy proceeding a manipulation of the bankruptcy process, according to Reuters.
Attorneys representing the plaintiffs stated in their counter-motion that “LTL could have made an honest settlement offer after its first bankruptcy failed,” but allegedly instead chose to file for bankruptcy a second time in order to “impose” the corporation’s $8.9 billion settlement offer on plaintiffs. The plaintiffs argue that the multinational corporation valued at over $400 billion did not need bankruptcy protections to prevent it from having the money to pay out to plaintiffs.
J&J and representatives for LTL management have made a joint statement claiming that bankruptcy is a more equitable way to distribute financial resources to plaintiffs rather than the “lottery” system of trials that gives large payouts to some while denying payment to others.
U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Michael Kaplan, who presided over the initial bankruptcy proceeding, has maintained a neutral stance on the issue. On the one hand, he refused to capitulate to plaintiff requests that he immediately dismiss the second bankruptcy filing. On the other hand, Judge Kaplan is quoted as saying that J&J has an “uphill battle” to gain a different outcome from this second bankruptcy proceeding.
If you or a loved one have been injured after using Johnson & Johnson’s talcum powder or any other consumer product, you may be entitled to financial compensation. To see if you qualify for compensation for your injuries, complete a free case review.