This summer, rumors spread regarding a possible settlement of the thousands of lawsuits filed against Bayer’s Monsanto in federal court. Currently, over 18,000 federal lawsuits have been filed against Monsanto claiming that exposure to the company’s glyphosate-based herbicides caused them to develop non-Hodgkin Lymphoma and that Monsanto hid the risks associated with Roundup.
The fourth federal trial is set to take place in St. Louis, Missouri in October. The three previous trials, which Monsanto lost, were all held in California. Whether or not a trial will still take place in mid-October in St. Louis is questionable, as attorneys for both sides have filed several pre-trial motions.
What has become apparent after several trials is that juries have reacted strongly to the corporate misconduct. There is extensive evidence of possible corporate wrongdoing as the company has known about the possible dangers for decades. This has resulted in the high punitive damages that have dwarfed the compensatory damages.
In July, Bayer’s CEO Werner Baumann said the company was, “constructively engaging in the mediation process.” Shortly thereafter, it was reported by Bloomberg that Bayer offered to pay $8 billion to settle the pending federal cases. This news report was quickly shut down, as the mediator, Ken Feinberg, stated that compensation had not even been discussed. Regardless, settlement discussions through mediation are currently taking place.
A potential settlement involving the Roundup lawsuits is very different from settlements involving drugs, medical devices, or other consumer goods because drugs or medical devices are often discontinued so the future risks are more predictable. Bayer’s Monsanto has never publicly considered pulling Roundup off the market. However, in June, Bayer announced a $5.6 billion investment to research and develop a glyphosate alternative.
Even should Bayer settle the federal litigation, this will still only reduce some of its litigation risk. While many of the lawsuits are in federal court, the majority of litigation is in state court. The three cases so far that have resulted in the extremely large jury verdicts have all been heard in state courts in California.
Edmiston & Colton Law Firm is one of the only Montana law firms handling these cases in Montana state court and federal court. If you or a loved one has non-Hodgkin Lymphoma possibly related to Roundup, contact the lawyers at Edmiston & Colton Law Firm to learn your legal rights and see if you have a case. Please visit Edmiston & Colton Law firm at www.yellowstonelaw.com or call (406) 259-9986.