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June 12, 2024

Maine to get $4.8M from multistate settlement with Johnson & Johnson

Gavel and U.S. flag Photo / Courtesy, Pixabay Maine will receive more than $4.8 million from a $700 million multistate settlement with Johnson & Johnson.

Maine will receive more than $4.8 million from a $700 million multistate settlement with Johnson & Johnson (NYSE: JNJ), resolving claims that the company wrongfully marketed talc-based baby powder and other products that plaintiffs claimed harmed thousands of consumers.

The New Brunswick, N.J., manufacturer did not admit wrongdoing in settling with Maine and 42 other states. The lawsuit alleged that the company misled customers in ads related to the safety and purity of some of its talc powder products. 

Johnson & Johnson sold such products for over 100 years. After the coalition of states began investigating, J&J stopped distributing and selling the products in the United States and more recently ended global sales, according to the Office of Maine Attorney General Aaron Frey.

“While deceiving consumers about the safety of a product is deplorable, it is particularly egregious that the unsafe product at issue was primarily marketed for babies.” Frey said in Tuesday's announcement.

The settlement still requires judicial approval.

While the multistate lawsuit targeted J&J's product marketing, private plaintiffs around the country have also sued the company, alleging its talc products have caused ovarian cancer and mesothelioma, a type of cancer linked to asbestos exposure. 

Texas, Florida and North Carolina led the multistate settlement, which was announced in principle by Johnson & Johnson in January.

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