Product defect lawsuits are common. Injury victims filed 30% more product injury lawsuits in 2019 than 2018. Product manufacturers must make products that are safe for us to use. When someone is hurt because a company failed to create a safe product or offer enough warnings, it may be liable for victims’ damages.
Defective products usually involve many victims, so these lawsuits can be big bucks. Below are some of the most significant product liability lawsuits in recent US history. If you suffered damages from a defective product, you could be eligible for compensation.
The first lawsuit involving this medical device happened in 2012. Medical device companies eventually coughed up almost $1.5 billion settlements to 100,000 injury victims between 2012 and 2020.
Transvaginal mesh is a medical implant used to help pelvic organ prolapse and stress incontinence. Surgical mesh implants may offer support to the organs and mend damaged human tissue.
But this medical device may lead to severe side effects in some women. Injury victims claim that medical device companies failed to test their devices. This failure may have led women to suffer vaginal scarring and severe pain.
The International Agency for Research or IARC released research in 2015 that linked the weedkiller Roundup to some types of cancer. The agency concluded that Roundup is probably a human carcinogen. Since 2015, plaintiffs have filed more than 100,000 Roundup lawsuits against product maker Monsanto.
Billions of dollars have been paid in product liability settlements. Plaintiffs argue that the weedkiller made them develop non-Hodgkins lymphoma. Also, they claim Monsanto knew about the dangerous side effects and did nothing.
Bayer bought Monsanto in 2019, and the healthcare giant paid $11 billion in settlements in June 2020.
The NHTSA ordered the recall of millions of Takata airbags in 2014 because of potentially fatal defects. Takata used ammonium nitrate – an explosive chemical – to propel the airbag during an accident. This chemical may destabilize from heat exposure over the years, possibly causing it to spray shrapnel in the vehicle passenger compartment.
Many major auto manufacturers used the airbags, including GM, Ford, Honda, Toyota, from 2002-2015 in more than 40 million US vehicles.
It’s estimated the airbags killed 16 people and injured hundreds. Injured victims argue that the airbags were defective, and Takata knew about the problem for 20 years. The airbag manufacturer has paid $1 billion in damages so far.
Reuters issued a report in 2018 that Johnson & Johnson knew that its baby powder and other related products contained tiny amounts of asbestos but did not warn the public.
Asbestos is a hazardous substance that can lead to terminal cancer called mesothelioma. The deadly mineral is found near talcum deposits that can cause contamination problems.
Plaintiffs argue that using talcum powder led them to develop ovarian cancer and mesothelioma. Lawsuits are still happening, but many have settled for billions of dollars, including one in Missouri that ordered J&J to pay $2 billion in damages to several injured women.
3M agreed to pay $9 million in 2018 to resolve accusations that it sold defective Combat Arms Earplugs to the United States military. Various military branches stated that the company knew about its defects but sold them anyway. 3M also has been accused it hid test data to cover up the imperfections.
More than 100,000 injury victims joined product injury lawsuits against 3M, stating they have suffered hearing loss and tinnitus.
The above product liability lawsuits have resulted in hundreds of thousands of injury victims receiving much-needed compensation. Remember to speak to a skilled product liability lawyer if you think a defective product injured you.