Bayer Seeks to Appeal Weedkiller Cancer Lawsuits

June 11, 2019 | Attorney, Matthew Dolman
Bayer Seeks to Appeal Weedkiller Cancer Lawsuits

Weedkiller Manufacturer Suffers After Cancer Lawsuits

The massive pharmaceutical company known as Bayer has recently suffered significant financial losses as a result of a number of successful cancer lawsuits against them. The lawsuits have centered around a product created by a company named Monsanto that Bayer recently acquired called Roundup. Roundup is an herbicide primarily used as a weedkiller across the globe with many American households exposed to its use. The plaintiffs in these lawsuits have alleged that Monsanto is responsible for putting out a product that has the effect of increasing the risk of cancers like non-Hodgkin lymphoma among those that suffer long term exposure to it. The last three roundup lawsuits against Monsanto and its parent company Bayer by extension have been successful in obtaining compensation for plaintiffs afflicted by cancer believed to have been caused by Roundup weedkiller exposure. These lawsuits have resulted in rewards to plaintiffs amounting to a total loss of over one billion dollars to Monsanto and Bayer with around 13,000 more plaintiffs waiting with their own lawsuits.

Bayer Focuses on Appealing Roundup Cancer Lawsuits

As a result of these significant financial losses reaching the billions with even more significant losses on the horizon, Bayer has taken actions to initiate a new strategy when it comes to dealing with the myriad of Roundup cancer lawsuits filed against them. Several of the previous cases that successfully secured compensation for plaintiffs suffering from Roundup caused cancer have been appealed by Bayer. The Germany based pharmaceutical giant has made these appeals in the hopes that the cases will have another opportunity to be reviewed not by a jury but a judge in appeals courts if the previous verdicts are overturned. The previous case verdicts were all reached with unanimity from the respective juries. Many believe that this plan by Bayer is not due for much success with maybe a reduction in the amount awarded being the most that happens. All three previous cases were met with similar responses where the presentation of evidence linking the Roundup ingredient known as glyphosate to an increased risk in cancer development. Bayer will likely now shift to a damage control strategy where they focus on settlements with the many plaintiffs filing Roundup cancer lawsuits against them. This would seem to be a better alternative to taking a large number of plaintiffs to lengthy trials where similar large verdicts can be reached.

What is the Basis of the Roundup Weedkiller Controversy

The controversy surrounding Roundup weedkiller began as soon as the first lawsuit was filed against Monsanto back in 2016. The case presented evidence that Roundup weedkiller used an herbicide ingredient called glyphosate that was linked to an increased risk of cancer development. Several studies have shown that the ingredient definitely does cause an increase in cancer risk with institutions such as the American Cancer Society acknowledging the danger of the substance. What is interesting about the cases against Monsanto regarding Roundup weedkiller is the basis on which Monsanto is liable for the damages that were caused to the numerous plaintiffs that filed lawsuits. Monsanto is not liable simply because they put out Roundup weedkiller with an ingredient that causes an increase in cancer risk. They are liable because the product they put out did not have adequate caution labeling warning consumers of the risks of using their product.

Product Liability Law and Roundup

This is all part of product liability which is the area of tort law that these cases against Monsanto fall under. With product liability, a manufacturer or producer of a product that has harmed a consumer can be held liable either because the inherent design of the product was harmful to a consumer when used as intended, the manufacturing process left dangerous defects in the product, or the product simply did not have any kind of warning of the potential dangers that a consumer would reasonably need to be made aware of.

Previous Roundup Weedkiller Cancer Cases Against Monsanto

The first Roundup weedkiller case against Monsanto was filed by Dewayne Johnson. Mr. Johnson was a groundskeeper for the public school district of Benicia county where he regularly used and was exposed to Roundup weedkiller that he used in his job for several years. Despite taking some precautions to avoid exposure to the weedkiller, Dewayne Johnson could not avoid exposure completely and as a result, developed non-Hodgkins lymphoma that his doctors estimated would be terminal. After discovering several studies that showed glyphosate was linked to cancer risk, Mr. Johnson successfully sued Monsanto and was awarded $250m in punitive damages and $39.2m for losses.

Other Roundup Cases Against Monsanto

The other two major cases against Monsanto regarding their controversial Roundup weedkiller also were successful in securing compensation for their plaintiffs. Edwin Hardeman sued Monsanto because he developed non-Hodgkins lymphoma after using Roundup weedkiller on his properties for several decades. Much like Dewayne Johnson, Hardeman's case presented similar evidence tying glyphosate to cancer risk and was awarded $80 million in damages from Monsanto. Another lawsuit filed by Alva and Alberta Pilliod would be similarly successful after using similar arguments showing that their cancer was caused by the improperly labeled Roundup products that they used and were exposed to. They ended up being awarded compensation in the form of $2 billion dollars.

Seek an Experienced Product Liability Attorney

If you or a loved one have been injured because of a product's negligent design or manufacture, then do not hesitate to contact Dolman Law Group Accident Injury Lawyers, PA about a free consultation on your claim. Our skilled lawyers have the expertise you will need to secure the settlement that you deserve. Dolman Law has years of experience when it comes to handling product liability claims and ensuring that our clients receive the compensation that they need in order to pay off their medical expenses, lost wages, etc. When you enlist the assistance of Dolman Law you are ensuring that your case gets the small firm attention it deserves with big firm results. Contact us at Dolman Law Group Accident Injury Lawyers, PA's offices. Please fill out our online contact form or call us at 727-451-6900. Dolman Law Group Accident Injury Lawyers, PA 800 North Belcher Road Clearwater, FL 33765 727-451-6900


Matthew Dolman

Personal Injury Lawyer

This article was written and reviewed by Matthew Dolman. Matt has been a practicing civil trial, personal injury, products liability, and mass tort lawyer since 2004. He has successfully fought for more than 11,000 injured clients and acted as lead counsel in more than 1,000 lawsuits. Always on the cutting edge of personal injury law, Matt is actively engaged in complex legal matters, including Suboxone, AFFF, and Ozempic lawsuits.  Matt is a lifetime member of the Million Dollar Advocates Forum and Multi-Million Dollar Advocates Forum for resolving individual cases in excess of $1 million and $2 million, respectively. He has also been selected by his colleagues as a Florida Superlawyer and as a member of Florida’s Legal Elite on multiple occasions. Further, Matt has been quoted in the media numerous times and is a sought-after speaker on a variety of legal issues and topics.

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