This case was last updated from Santa Clara County Superior Courts on 08/14/2019 at 07:58:51 (UTC).

Givens v. Johnson & Johnson, et al. [Coordinated into JCCP4872 Los Angeles]

Case Summary

On 07/02/2018 Givens filed a Personal Injury - Other Product Liability lawsuit against Johnson Johnson, Coordinated into JCCP4872 Los Angeles. This case was filed in Santa Clara County Superior Courts, Downtown Superior Court located in Santa Clara, California. The Judge overseeing this case is Walsh, Brian C. The case status is Other - Stayed.

Case Details Parties Documents Dockets

 

Case Details

  • Case Number:

    ******0954

  • Filing Date:

    07/02/2018

  • Case Status:

    Other - Stayed

  • Case Type:

    Personal Injury - Other Product Liability

  • Court:

    Santa Clara County Superior Courts

  • Courthouse:

    Downtown Superior Court

  • County, State:

    Santa Clara, California

Judge Details

Judge

Walsh, Brian C

 

Party Details

Plaintiff

Givens, Susan

Defendants

Imerys Talc America, Inc.

Luzenac America, Inc.

Johnson & Johnson Consumer Companies, Inc.

Johnson & Johnson

Not Classified By Court

Superior Court of California

Attorney/Law Firm Details

Plaintiff Attorney

Griffin, Keith David

Not Classified By Court Attorney

Superior Court of CA, County of Santa Clara

 

Court Documents

Notice

Givens Marilyn Notice of Court Order.pdf: Comment: Notice of Court Order Re Coordination of Add-On Cases

Notice

Givens Notice of Submission.pdf: Comment: Notice of Submission of Potential Add-On Cases for Coordination of This Case Into JCCP 4872

Order: Deeming Case Complex

Order Deeming Case Complex and Staying Action Pending Coordination Proceedings: Comment: Order Deeming Case Complex and Staying Action Pending Coordination Proceedings signed/BCW

Civil Lawsuit Notice

Civil Law Notice.pdf:

Complaint (Unlimited) (Fee Applies)

Complaint (Unlimited) (Fee Applies):

Summons: Issued/Filed

Givens, Susan - Summons.pdf:

Civil Case Cover Sheet

Givens, Susan - Civil Case Cover Sheet.pdf:

 

Docket Entries

  • 10/19/2018
  • Conference: Case Management - Judicial Officer: Walsh, Brian C; Hearing Time: 10:00 AM; Cancel Reason: Vacated; Comment: (1st CMC) Discovery and responsive pleading deadline stayed, as of 7/26/18, when the case was deemed complex. Matter stayed, as of 7/26/18, pending coordination proceedings.

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  • 09/21/2018
  • View Court Documents
  • Notice - Givens Marilyn Notice of Court Order.pdf: Comment: Notice of Court Order Re Coordination of Add-On Cases

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  • 08/08/2018
  • View Court Documents
  • Notice - Givens Notice of Submission.pdf: Comment: Notice of Submission of Potential Add-On Cases for Coordination of This Case Into JCCP 4872

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  • 07/26/2018
  • View Court Documents
  • Order: Deeming Case Complex - Order Deeming Case Complex and Staying Action Pending Coordination Proceedings: Comment: Order Deeming Case Complex and Staying Action Pending Coordination Proceedings signed/BCW

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  • 07/02/2018
  • View Court Documents
  • Civil Lawsuit Notice - Civil Law Notice.pdf:

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  • 07/02/2018
  • View Court Documents
  • Complaint (Unlimited) (Fee Applies) - Complaint (Unlimited) (Fee Applies):

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  • 07/02/2018
  • View Court Documents
  • Summons: Issued/Filed - Givens, Susan - Summons.pdf:

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  • 07/02/2018
  • View Court Documents
  • Civil Case Cover Sheet - Givens, Susan - Civil Case Cover Sheet.pdf:

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Complaint Information

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NATURE OF THE ACTION

1. This is a products liability case arising out of the severe injuries PLAINTIFF suffered as a resulttalc-based products manufactured, designed, marketed, promoted, labeled, tested, distributed, and/or sold by DEFENDANTS, and each of them.

2. DEFENDANTS, and each of them, substantially contributed to the manufacture, design, distribution, promotion, marketing, labeling, testing and selling of the talb-based products used by PLAINTIFF, including but not limited to Johnson's® Baby Powder and Shower to Shower® (the talc-based products used by Plaintiff are referred to herein as the "SUBJECT TALC-BASED PRODUCTS"). Each DEFENDANT is, and at all relevant times herein was, a participant and/or entity in the chain of distribution for these products.

PARTIES

3. PLAINTIFF is, and at all relevant times herein was, a citizen and resident of the State of Deleware. |

4, PLAINTIFF used the SUBJECT TALC-BASED PRODUCTS to dust her perineum for feminine hygiene purposes on a daily basis for many years, beginning in approximately 1956 through approximately 2017.

5. PLAINTIFF purchased the SUBJECT TALC-BASED PRODUCTS in the State of Deleware.

6. In or about April 29, 2016, PLAINTIFF was diagnosed with ovarian cancet. PLAINTIFF has undergone extensive treatment to treat her cancer.

7. PLAINTIFF'é ovarian cancer was and is a direct and proximate resultSUBJECT TALC-BASED PRODUCTS developed, manufactured, designed, marketed, labeled, promoted, tested, distributed and/or sold by DEFENDANTS.

8. PLAINTIFF received treatment for her cancer in the State of Deleware.

9. Defendant JOHNSON & JOHNSON is a corporation organized and existing under the laws of the State of New Jersey with its principal place of business in the State of New Jersey.

10. JOHNSON & JOHNSON was and is authorized to do business in the State of

California and was and is engaged in substantial comings and business activities in California,26

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including Los Angeles County.

11. JOHNSON & JOHNSON derives substantial revenue from the products it sells, including the SUBJECT TALC-BASED PRODUCTS, in the State of California and County of Los Angeles.

12. JOHNSON & JOHNSON is engaged in the business of designing, developing, manufacturing, testing, promoting and selling such over-the-counter products, including the SUBJECT TALC-BASED PRODUCTS.

13. At all relevant times herein, JOHNSON & JOHNSON designed, manufactured, marketed, promoted, tested, distributed and sold the SUBJECT TALC-BASED PRODUCTS to the general public, including PLAINTIFF.

14, Defendant JOHNSON & JOHNSON CONSUMER COMPANIES, INC. (hereinafter "J&J CONSUMER") is a corporation organized and existing under the laws of the State of New Jersey with its principal place of business in the State of New Jersey.

15. Upon information and belief, J&J CONSUMER is, and at all relevant times herein Was, a wholly owned subsidiary of JOHNSON & JOHNSON.

16. J&J CONSUMER was and is authorized to do business in the State of California and was and is engaged in substantial comings and business activities in California, including Los Angeles County.

17. J&J CONSUMER derives substantial revenue from the products it sells, including the SUBJECT TALC-BASED PRODUCTS, in the State of California and County of Los Angeles.

18. J&J CONSUMER is engaged in the business of designing, developing, | manufacturing, testing, promoting and selling such over-the-counter products, including the SUBJECT TALC-BASED PRODUCTS.

19. At all relevant times herein, J&J CONSUMER designed, manufactured, marketed, promoted, tested, distributed and sold the SUBJECT TALC-BASED PRODUCTS to the general public, including PLAINTIFF.

20. Defendant IMERYS TALC AMERICA, INC. f/k/a LUZENAC AMERICA, INC,

(hereinafter "IMERYS TALC") is corporation organized and existing under the laws of the Statepage 3 can't be parsed

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SUBJECT TALC-BASED PRODUCTS for use by women for feminine hygiene purposes.

50. Further, upon information and belief, DEFENDANTS and their agents, employees, and officers, promoted the SUBJECT TALC-BASED PRODUCTS .t'o the general public as safe, despite their knowledge to the contrary.

Defendants Concealed the Risks of the Subject Talc-Based Products and Misrepresented the Safety of These Products

51. Despite DEFENDANTS’ longstanding knowledge of the increased risk of ovarian cancer, DEFENDANTS, and each of them, failed to warn and disclose to consumers, including PLAINTIFF, that the SUBJECT TALC-BASED PRODUCTS significantly increase the risk of ovarian cancer.

52. DEFENDANTS knew of the dangerous effects associated with the use of the SUBJECT TALC-BASED PRODUCTS for feminine hygiene purposes from the published studies and other medical literature confirming these risks. However, DEFENDANTS took no action to properly study the SUBJECT TALC-BASED PRODUCTS, which would have reflected that risk. DEFENDANTS, and each of them, failed to adequately warn or remedy the risks, but instead concealed, suppressed and failed to disclose the dangers.

53. Further, DEFENDANTS, and each of them, knew of the harmful effects of the SUBJECT TALC-BASED PRODUCTS and/or talcum powder prior to PLAINTIFF's initial use of these products, yet DEFENDANTS purposefully failed to disclose these risks to the general public, including PLAINTIFF.

54. Moreover, each of the DEFENDANTS actively marketed and promoted talcum powder and/or the SUBJECT TALC-BASED PRODUCTS as safe and non-hazardous to women's health. These intentional marketing and promotional strategies included disseminating false and misleading information regarding the safety of SUBJECT TALC-BASED PRODUCTS to the public and medical community.

55. InFebruary 1998, a memo was written by Luzenac (now known as IMERYS TALC) regarding a visit to H. Anton Culver, the chief of epidemiology division at UC Irvine. The

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development in cosmetic applications and avoid the initiation of a process for classification of talc as a carcinogen."

56. The February 1998 memo also discussed a plan to criticize and downplay the studies associating talc with cancer.

57. Asearly as 1998, IMERYS TALC knew that talc was hazardous to human health and a potential carcinogen. Despite this knowledge, IMERYS TALC purposefully and knowingly criticized the scientific literature revealing this causal connection and downplayed the risks of talc.

58. IMERYS TALC knew that its product, talc, was a component of the SUBJECT TALC-BASED PRODUCTS and that inclusion of talc in these products presented a danger to consumers, yet they consciously attempted to prevent consumers, including PLAINTIFF, from knowing this information.

59. This concealment was done in order to increase profits in the cosmetic application market, including but not limited to the SUBJECT TALC-BASED PRODUCTS which IMERYS TALC knew were being used by consumers for feminine hygiene purposes, including by PLAINTIFF. -

60. Further, at all relevant times herein, JOHNSON & JOHNSON marketed and promoted the SUBJECT TALC-BASED PRODUCTS as products for freshness, cleanliness, and comfort, Further, the labeling on Johnson's Baby Powder specifically states its intended use for

women: "For you, use anytime you want skin to feel soft, fresh, and comfortable."

Moreover, DEFENDANTS utilized slogans on the Shower to Shower products to target potential female purchasers, stating: "Just a sprinkle a day helps keep odor away."”

61. Despite knowing the serious and hazardous risks that the SUBJECT TALC- BASED PRODUCTS caused to women who used these products for feminine hygiene purposes, DEFENDANTS, and each of them, promoted, advertised, and marketed the SUBJECT TALC-

BASED PRODUCTS to the general public, including PLAINTIFF, as safe and efficacious for use

& https://www.johnsonsbaby.com/powder/johnsons-baby-powder#how-amp-when-to-use

d http://www.showertoshowe;'.com/Homepage 9 can't be parsed

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each of them, further failed to provide proper post-market and/or post-sale warnings or in.structions because, after DEFENDANTS knew or should have known of the risks of dangerous side effects of the SUBJECT TALC-BASED PRODUCTS, they fafled to provide adequate warnings to users or consumers of the product, including PLAINTIFF, and continued to promote and market the products as safe. |

75. Asadirect and proximate result of DEFENDANTS' failure to provide adequate warnings and failure to use reasonable care to warn of the dangerous risks and effects of the SUBJECT TALC-BASED PRODUCTS, PLAINTIFF suffered serious and permanent injuries and damages, as described herein, including but not limited to physical injuries, pain and suffering, extreme mental and physical anguish, economic loss, and the need for continuing treatment, and will continue to suffer such damages in the ftiture.

76. In performing the foregoing acts and omissions, DEFENDANTS, and each of them, acted despicably, fraudulently, and with malice and oppression so as to justify an award of punitive and exemplary damages.

SECOND CAUSE OF ACTION

(By PLAINTIFF Against JOHNSON & JOHNSON; JOHNSON & JOHNSON CONSUMER COMPANIES, INC.; IMERYS TALC AMERICA, INC. f/k/a LUZENAC AMERICA, INC.; and DOES 1 through 100, inclusive)

STRICT PRODUCTS LIABILITY- DESIGN DEFECT

77. PLAINTIFF re-alleges paragraphs 1 through 67, inclusive, and incorporates them herein by reference as though set forth in full.

78. J&J DEFENDANTS, IMERYS TALC, and DOES 1 through 100, inclusive, and each of them, designed, manufactured, tested, marketed, distributed, and/or sold the SUBJECT TALC-BASED PRODUCTS into the stream of commerce.

79. Each DEFENDANT was a critical entity and participant in the SUBJECT TALC- BASED PRODUCTS entering the stream of commerce.

80. The SUBJECT TALC-BASED PRODUCTS were expected to and did reach

PLAINTIFF without substantial change in its condition as manufactured, created, designed, tested,page 12 can't be parsed

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have been known and/or discovered by DEFENDANTS.

129. J&J DEFENDANTS, IMERYS TALC, and DOES 1 through 100, inclusive, and each of them, had a duty to exercise reasonable care in the design, formulation, manufacture, labeling, marketing, advertising, supplying, sale, and distribution of the SUBJECT TALC-BASED PRODUCTS. |

130. Specifically, each DEFENDANT had a duty to assure that the SUBJECT TALC- BASED PRODUCTS did not pose an unreasonable risk of bodily harm and/or adverse events.

131. J&JDEFENDANTS, IMERYS TALC, and DOES 1 through 100, inclusive, and each of them, and their agents, officers and/or employees, failed to exercise ordinary care and failed to comply with existing standards of care, including but not limited to the following acts and/or omissions:

a. J&J DEFENDANTS, IMERYS TALC, and DOES 1 through 100, inclusive, and each of them, negligently and recklessly produced, manufactured, designed, marketed, advertised, supplied, sold, and distributed the

SUBJECT TALC-BASED PRODUCTS;

b. By omitting adequate warnings from the SUBJECT TALC-BASED PRODUCTS, DEFENDANTS, and each of them, failed to act as reasonably prudent manufacturers, sellers, and/or distributors of their products;

c¢. Further, by promoting, marketing, and advertising the SUBJECT TALC-

- BASED PRODUCTS as safe for use by women for feminine hygiene purposes, each DEFENDANT was negligent and put PLAINTIFF at risk for the serious injuries PLAINTIFF sustained as a result of each DEFENDANT's negligence.

d. DEFENDANTS, and each of them, breached their duty to the public, including PLAINTIFF, by failing to warn of the SUBJECT TALC-BASED PRODUCTS' dangerous characterisfics and increased risks of ‘serious harm and injury, including but not limited to developing ovarian cancer.

132. Asadirect and proximate cause of each DEFENDANTS' negligence, PLAINTIFF suffered serious and permanent injuries and damages, as described herein, induding but not limited to physical injuries, pain and suffering, extreme mental and physical anguish, economic loss, and the need for continuing treatment, and will continue to suffer such damages in the future.

133. The foregoing acts, conduct, and omissions of each DEFENDANT were vile, willful, malicious, wanton, oppressive, and fraudulent, and were done with a conscious disregard for the health, safety and rights of PLAINTIFF, and other persons affected by the use of DEFENDANTS' product, and for the primary purpose of increasing DEFENDANTS' profits. In performing the foregoing acts and omissions, DEFENDANTS, and each of them, acted despicably, fraudulently, and with malice and oppression so as to justify an award of punitive and exemplary damages.

RELIEF REQUESTED

WHEREFORE, PLAINTIFF prays for judgment against DEFENDANTS, and each of them, as follows:

1. Compensatory damages, including but not limited to pain, suffering, emotional distress, loss of enjoyment of life, loss of consortium, and other non-economic damages, in an amount to be determined at trial;

A Past and future medical expenses, income, earning capacity, and other economic

damages in an amount to be determined at trial;

3. Punitive damages in an amount to be determined at trial;

4. Pre- and posf— judgment ifiterest;

3. Expenses and costs incurred in this action; and

0. For such other and further relief as this Court deems necessary, just and proper. DATED: June 20, 2018 GIRARDI | KEESE

By:

MELISA ROSADINI

Attorneys for Plaintiff 4

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DEMAND FOR JURY TRIAL

PLAINTIFF hereby demands a trial by jury. DATED: June 20, 2018 GIRARDI ) KEESE

KEITH D. GRIFFIN

MELISA ROSADINI