Monsanto, the maker of the renowned weed killer Roundup, has been hit with a slew of lawsuits in recent years. Monsanto had secured payment agreements in approximately 100,000 Roundup claims as of August 2022, paying out around $11 billion.
Bayer, the German pharmaceutical company that owns Monsanto, has done so by arranging block settlement agreements with plaintiffs’ lawyers who have a significant number of cases in the litigation.
Despite the fact that these settlements represent roughly 80% of all ongoing Roundup claims, there are currently between 26,000-30,000 active litigation cases. The majority of cases have been brought in state court.
However, nearly 4,000 claims are outstanding in the MDL Roundup class action case in California. New Roundup cases are being filed on a daily basis. Let’s take a look at some of the latest developments.
Recent Developments in Roundup Lawsuits:
The next Roundup weed killer lawsuit trial is set to be heard in St. Louis in early January 2023. The trial in Griswold v. Monsanto was supposed to begin in early January 2023, but it has been postponed until January 23, 2023.
The Courtroom View Network will broadcast this trial. Bayer has won defense verdicts in the previous five Roundup lawsuits tried in St. Louis. In other cases, however, Bayer has avoided trial by arranging last-minute settlements.
For instance, the last Roundup cancer lawsuit trial was set to begin in December 2022 in California state court. However, the trial never took place. Bayer resolved the dispute at the last minute.
The Future of the Litigation:
Bayer anticipates the Bayer Roundup claims to be dismissed in 2023. The 11th Circuit consented to an en banc review of a three-judge panel’s decision rejecting Bayer’s federal preemption claim in a Roundup case.
In another Roundup lawsuit development, Pennsylvania state court Judge Lysette Shirdon-Harris approved a mini-class action lawsuit against the pesticide. Her ruling combines over 100 Roundup claims into a single class action for discovery. The chemical manufacturer Nouryon, which produces a crucial hazardous component of Roundup, is also named as a defendant in these claims.
The plaintiff’s claim that Nouryon, based in Radnor, Pennsylvania, manufactured a hazardous component utilized in Roundup. As the number of ongoing claims in the state grows, Philadelphia may become a new hub of Roundup litigation. This may result in more settlements and rulings in favor of the plaintiffs.
Expected Settlement Amounts:
As the litigation continues, settlement amounts are likely to vary depending on the strength of each individual case. However, it is clear that Bayer is willing to pay significant amounts to settle these cases. The $11 billion paid in settlements so far is a clear indication of this. The company is likely to continue settling cases in order to avoid the possibility of larger jury verdicts.
It is important to note that settlements can be reached at different stages of the litigation process. In some cases, settlements may be reached before a trial even begins. In other cases, settlements may be reached during the trial, or even after a jury has reached a verdict.
The settlement amount will also depend on the specific facts of the case, such as the individual’s exposure to Roundup and their diagnosis of non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. In addition to the settlements, Bayer may also be responsible for paying the plaintiff’s legal fees. These fees can be substantial, as the litigation process is often complex and time-consuming.
It is also worth noting that the settlements are typically confidential, meaning that the specific terms of the settlement, including the amount paid, are not made public. However, it is fair to say there is a settlement premium paid for cases that are ripe for trial. In the Langford v. Monsanto case mentioned earlier, the settlement terms were confidential, and it is not known how much Bayer paid to the plaintiff.
In conclusion, the ongoing Roundup cancer trials have been a significant source of legal trouble for Monsanto and its parent company Bayer. Despite securing payment agreements in approximately 100,000 Roundup claims and paying out around $11 billion, there are still a significant number of active lawsuits against the company.
Recent developments in the litigation include a new Roundup trial scheduled in St. Louis and a mini-class action lawsuit against the pesticide in Pennsylvania. Bayer appears to be expecting a dismissal of the Bayer Roundup lawsuits in 2023, but with more settlements and rulings in favor of the plaintiffs, the outcome is uncertain.
The settlement amounts are expected to vary as the litigation progresses, with settlement premiums for cases that are ready for trial. Overall, the future of the Roundup cancer trials remains uncertain, and it is likely that the legal battle will continue for some time to come.