Efficiency in Justice: Why Bankruptcy is the Best Path Forward for Talc Claims

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Resolution of these claims must unequivocally prioritize claimants’ best interests – lawyers’ financial interests must never take priority over the integrity and fundamental fairness of these proceedings.

This op-ed was originally published as a LinkedIn article.

A High-Stakes Case on the Verge of a Landmark Decision

Any day now, we expect a decision in one of the most consequential civil cases in the nation which involves more than 60,000 talcum powder claimants and Johnson & Johnson subsidiary LTL Management.

A recent hearing in the case before U.S. Chief Bankruptcy Judge Michael Kaplan for the District of New Jersey included an important revelation: despite the fact that claimants’ lawyers vigorously oppose consolidation of these cases in the bankruptcy process, these same lawyers plan to do exactly that if they are successful in having the bankruptcy proceedings dismissed.

Lawyers for these claimants are not opposing the bankruptcy process because it is too expensive or will take too long for their clients. The opposite is, in fact, the case. Bankruptcy will expedite the resolution of claims with all on an equal footing rather than a “race to the courthouse” if all claims are to be resolved through full-blown litigation. Johnson & Johnson has committed to contribute up to $8.9 billion over 25 years to resolve these cases. It is no wonder that counsel for 69% of claimants have committed to supporting proceedings under the bankruptcy process.

Read more on LinkedIn.

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