July 2019 marks the start of The People of the State of California v. Johnson & Johnson, a major case that is unfolding over the next two months in San Diego. The state’s attorney general brought the lawsuit against industry giant Johnson & Johnson, alleging that the company intentionally misled consumers about the safety of their defective pelvic mesh implants, which are manufactured by Ethicon (a subsidiary of Johnson & Johnson). The company could potentially pay up to one billion dollars in damages if it is found to be at fault.
Prior Claims Slowly Paved the Way
This case is the first of its kind to involve the state of California, as all the previous cases regarding these pelvic mesh implants have been brought by individual plaintiffs through product liability and personal injury claims. It is estimated that as many as 50,000 women and their doctors have been enticed to use these implants to address afflictions such as incontinence and organ prolapse. Due to the sheer volume of product liability and personal injury claims, the U.S. Food & Drug Administration finally compelled the two companies selling these products to cease distribution. A similar lawsuit in Washington state resulted in Ethicon agreeing to pay a 9.9 billion dollar settlement without admitting any wrongdoing.
Although the trial, which is currently taking place in San Diego, could take up to two months to conclude, it is sure to draw the attention of many individuals and companies. The opening statements already make it clear that the products are believed to cause painful and persistent medical problems, while the defense contends that the companies provided sufficient warnings about potential risks to consumers.
For more information about how to pursue a product liability or personal injury claim in California, arrange a free consultation with the knowledgeable attorneys at Hales & Associates, A Professional Law Corporation by calling (951) 489-3320 today.