Bayer Reaches $2 Billion for Future Roundup Claims

Bayer AG on Wednesday agreed to a settlement of up to $2 billion to resolve any future claims against Monstano’s Roundup.

The settlement will be set up in the form of a fund with an initial four-year program. Qualified consumers will be compensated through the fund. Consumers will also receive notice and diagnostic assistance and free legal aid if they have suffered injuries related to Roundup exposure.

The settlement applies to consumers who have not yet filed suit.

Bayer previously announced a $10.9 billion deal to settle the 150,000 claims already filed against the manufacturer.

Monsanto will be required to add public information about Roundup and the product’s link to non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma to product labels – the company has submitted this label modification to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for approval.

For questions or inquiries about settlement, please contact an attorney at TorHoerman Law.

 

Bayer Allocates $2 Billion To Settle Future Roundup Cancer Claims

Monsanto’s parent company Bayer AG said it expects to pay $2 billion in a class settlement to resolve future claims that Roundup weedkiller causes cancer, increasing its original estimate of $1.25 billion.

The deal is part of a larger settlement the company announced in June to resolve claims in the sprawling multidistrict litigation in California federal court, which centers on allegations that glyphosate in the weedkiller Roundup made by Monsanto causes non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma.

“We are working in good faith to address the issues raised by the court to the satisfaction of the parties and need additional time to complete this process,” Bayer said in a statement. “These negotiations are confidential and therefore we cannot comment further at this time. Given the progress in the negotiations, we are taking additional provision in this quarter in part to cover the expected additional cost of the revised class plan which will take the cost of this program from $1.25 to approximately $2 billion.”

Bayer’s announcement comes more than a month after plaintiffs’ attorneys told the court they’d reached a “binding” agreement with Bayer following concerns that a $10 billion settlement announced in June fell through.

Representatives for the plaintiffs could not immediately be reached for comment.

 

Monsanto Loses Cancer Liability Lawsuit in Roundup Appeal

A California appellate court announced that Monsanto Co. has been found liable for a former school groundskeeper’s cancer. This was the first lawsuit regard Roundup’s link to cancer to go to trial.

Dewayne “Lee” Johnson, the plaintiff, was awarded $20.6 million in compensatory damages. Johnson’s counsel stated that they are considering challenging the state high court “a deep flaw” in state tort law that does not allow a plaintiff to recover for a shortened life expectancy.

Bayer AG, which acquired Monsanto for $63 billion, said in a statement the jury’s verdict and damage awards are inconsistent with the evidence and the law, and the company is considering appealing to the California Supreme Court.

At the Court of Appeal, Monsanto challenged the trial court’s findings on several legal fronts and argued that the entire verdict must be thrown out because Johnson’s claims are preempted by the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act.

“Monsanto cannot avoid liability ‘merely because its failure to warn of a known or reasonably scientifically knowable risk conformed to an industry-wide practice of failing to provide warnings that constituted the standard of reasonable care,’ nor can it avoid liability simply because its own testing showed a result contrary to that of others in the scientific community.”

The panel rejected Monsanto’s claims that Johnson failed to prove his cancer was caused by Roundup. Also, the courts said Monsanto’s preemption arguments are foreclosed by the 2005 U.S. Supreme Court ruling Bates v. Dow Agrosciences, which held that such claims are preempted if the state labeling statutes and federal misbranding rules do not conflict.

In June, Bayer announced that it had reached a $10.9 billion settlement that would end about 75% of the current Roundup litigation, including 95% of the Roundup cases that are currently set for trial. The proposed settlement is subject to court appeal and does not include the three cases that have already been tried.

 

Judge Casts Doubt Over Settlement of Roundup Cancer Claims

An agreement for Bayer AG to pay more than $10 billion to settle thousands of claims that the popular weedkiller Roundup causes cancer is at risk of falling apart.

Judge Vince Chhabria of U.S. District Court in San Francisco warned in a filing, saying he is “skeptical of the propriety and fairness of the proposed settlement, and is tentatively inclined to deny the motion.”

He raised concerns about the creation of a scientific panel to determine whether the key ingredient, plyphosate, causes cancer and whether the agreement unfairly limits potential plaintiffs from suing. The settlement includes $8.8 billion to $9.6 billion to cover approximately 95,000 cases. In addition, $1.25 billion was set aside to finance the scientific panel and assist impoverished Roundup users with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma.

Bayer has maintained that the product is safe, and the settlement included no admission of liability or wrongdoing. Government regulators around the world, including the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, have said glyphosate does not cause cancer. However, in 2015, the International Agency for Research on Cancer, an extension of the World Health Organization, announced that glyphosate could “probably” cause cancer.

Judge Chhabria identified the three previous multimillion-dollar verdicts and asked, “Why would a potential class member want to replace a jury trial and the right to seek punitive damages with the process contemplated by the settlement agreement?”

Bayer is appealing all those judgements.

 

Jury Finds Monsanto Liable in Man’s Cancer, Awards $80 Million in Damages

For the second time in eight months, a jury has found that Monsanto’s weed killer, Roundup, has caused a man’s non-Hodgkin lymphoma. The plaintiff, Edward Hardeman, was awarded $80 million in damages. The jury found that not only did Roundup cause his cancer, but Monsanto knew about the carcinogenic risks and still failed to warn the public. The verdict announced concludes the two-part trial which alleged Roundup caused the plaintiff to develop non-Hodgkins lymphoma, an adverse effect of long-term exposure to Roundup that Monsanto was apparently aware of, despite safety warnings or transparency with their consumers. For more than three decades, Hardeman maintained his 56-acre property in Santa Rosa with Roundup weed killer. Hardeman’s bellwether trial was the first of hundreds of similar cases currently pending in California’s Northern District. During the first phase of the trial, the jury found that Roundup weed killer was a substantial factor in causing the plaintiff’s cancer. In the second phase of the trial, after hearing prosecutorial claims that Monsanto deliberately withheld or ignored warnings linking Roundup to non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, the jury found Monsanto liable for damages incurred by Hardeman. Hardeman was awarded $201,000 in economic damages, approximately $5 million in future and past non-economic damages, and $75 million in punitive damages.

“As demonstrated throughout the trial, since Roundup’s inception over 40 years ago, Monsanto refuses to act responsibly,” Hardeman’s attorneys Aimee Wagstaff and Jennifer Moore said in a joint statement. “Today, the jury resoundingly held Monsanto accountable for its 40 years of corporate malfeasance and sent a message to Monsanto that it needs to change the way it does business.” The next case to go to trial is scheduled for March 28 in the Oakland, CA state court. A second bellwether in the federal multi-district litigation (MDL) is scheduled to begin in mid-May.

Comprehensive Scientific Analysis Links Chemical Glyphosate to Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma

An encompassing new scientific analysis of the chemical glyphosate has found that people with high levels of exposure to the herbicide have a 41% increased risk of developing non-Hodgkin lymphoma. Glyphosate is the most commonly used base-agent in weedkilling products worldwide. The analysis consists of finding by five US scientists. These scientists’ findings directly contradict the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) previously research, which has found glyphosate to be a non-carcinogenic agent. The independence of the EPA’s research has been brought into question and is under review. However, a 2015 study conducted by the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) has classified glyphosate as a probable human carcinogen. According to the analysis, the evidence “supports a compelling link” between exposure to glyphosate-based herbicides and increased risk for non-Hodgkin lymphoma. New regulations limiting the use of glyphosate are currently being considered by regulators in numerous countries. Domestically, there are more than 9,000 lawsuits filed against Monsanto – a company that produces glyphosate-based Roundup weed-killer – on behalf of individuals who were exposed to Roundup and developed non-Hodgkin lymphoma. In August, a unanimous jury decision found in favor of the first plaintiff to go to trial in a Roundup lawsuit. The second trial is scheduled to begin in late February. Monsanto contends that the EPA’s findings were accurate and that other research linking glyphosate to non-Hodgkin lymphoma was conducted improperly and failed to consider the findings of similar studies.

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