Johnson & Johnson Lawsuit Article Critique
According to the article titled “Johnson & Johnson Faces Growing Threat of Lawsuits Over Talc and Cancer,” the author has provided in-depth details which have led to the company being sued because of its products’ side effects. Notably, the article has expounded on numerous lawsuits that the company has faced in the past, the decisions of the jury, the compensation figures it is supposed to pay, and the appeal details (Rockoff, 2016). In essence, the article has offered a two-dimension perspective whereby it highlights the courts’ decisions and the arguments that the company provided.
On the same note, the article has also provided an argument from Johnson & Johnson (J&J) which shows that the jury’s decisions are against the findings of various scientific researches. Specifically, medical experts have conducted these researches for 30 years according to J&J’s statement and they have proven that talc has a minimal higher risk of causing cancer. Nonetheless, the jury in these lawsuits made different rulings that favor the affected women and their families. Most importantly, the article has provided the figures, which were awarded in each of the lawsuits. For instance, J&J is supposed to pay a total of a whopping $127 million to the plaintiffs that blamed their ovarian cancer on the company’s talc product, which is its iconic baby powder. However, the firm is appealing against the two-jury verdicts that awarded this immense compensation (Rockoff, 2016).
It is worth noting that the article has provided an insightful history about the company’s lawsuit since 2011, which is easier for a person to comprehend the gravity of these litigations. Notably, the article has also exemplarily highlighted on what the company is currently trying to do to avoid further charges. It has incurred huge losses in its legal and sales settlements (Rockoff, 2016). In brief, the article is outstanding because it has provided balanced information concerning the jury’s verdicts, the company’s explanation towards the rulings, and a history about how these lawsuits started.
On the other hand, I concur with the author’s arguments because it is unacceptable for a reputable company such Johnson & Johnson to sell products that will eventually cause cancer and death. It is shocking to learn from the article that a woman named Jacqueline Fox died from ovarian cancer because of using talc. Ideally, the company needs to sell products, which are safe to its customers instead of making them lose their precious lives (Barron, 2013). Subsequently, the author has not provided a biased argument because he has highlighted on both sides of the jury’s verdict and the company’s explanation. Thus, a reader can effectively comprehend the facts from the two sides and make an informed decision since the author has not suggested a “direct” conclusion to his argument.
In summation, I also agree with the author because he has provided a history of the various lawsuits the company has faced since 2011. Ideally, this enables the reader to have a view that this trend has been taking place for some years. In particular, a South Dakota federal court in 2013 made a ruling that J&J was negligent after it had been sued because of its talc product. The author also provides information about some documents from J&J, which date back to the 1970s, portray that the firm had deep concerns about a link between ovarian cancer and talcum powder. This is an indication that the firm was already aware that its product was at a higher risk of causing cancer yet it never informed its customers about it. This is a gross misconduct on the part of J&J (Barron, 2013).
Barron, M. (2013). Fundamentals of Business Law. Sidney: McGraw-Hill Education Australia.
Rockoff, J., D. (2016). Johnson & Johnson Faces Growing Threat of Lawsuits Over Talc and Cancer. Retrieved on 7th May 2016 from http://www.wsj.com/articles/jury-orders-johnson-johnson-to-pay-55m-in-cancer-suit-over-powder-1462277113