NEW YORK (AP) — Johnson & Johnson (J&J) is requesting the removal of a prominent plaintiff firm from talc cases due to its previous collaboration with the firm’s former lawyer. J&J argues that the firm’s involvement in these cases poses a conflict of interest.
J&J has asked a federal judge in New York for the disqualification of Weitz & Luxenberg, a national plaintiff firm. According to court documents, J&J claims that Weitz & Luxenberg’s former attorney had previously worked for the company on talc-related matters. The attorney allegedly gained confidential and privileged information during his time at J&J.
The multinational corporation, known for its consumer health products, is facing thousands of lawsuits from individuals who claim that their use of J&J’s talc products led to them developing cancer. Some of these lawsuits have resulted in significant financial awards for the plaintiffs.
J&J argues that Weitz & Luxenberg should be disqualified from representing the plaintiffs due to the potential for the former lawyer to share privileged information. The company believes that this situation creates a clear ethical conflict for the firm.
If the removal request is granted, it could have a significant impact on the ongoing talc litigation. Weitz & Luxenberg represents numerous plaintiffs in these cases, and their removal would necessitate finding new legal representation for those individuals.
In response, Weitz & Luxenberg has denied any conflict of interest and asserts that the former lawyer had no involvement in the talc cases. The firm argues that J&J’s request is an attempt to disrupt the ongoing litigation.
The federal judge has yet to make a ruling on J&J’s request. The decision will have implications for the thousands of talc cases pending against the company.
Johnson & Johnson is seeking the removal of Weitz & Luxenberg from talc cases, citing a conflict of interest due to the firm’s former lawyer working on talc-related matters for the company. Weitz & Luxenberg denies any conflict of interest and argues that J&J’s request is unwarranted. The federal judge has yet to make a decision on the matter.