Products manufacturers have a duty of care to warn consumers about the potential dangers of their products. They also are not supposed to release unreasonably dangerous products into the market. If a product is defective, is unreasonably dangerous, or has inadequate warnings, the manufacturers may be liable when consumers who have used the products in an intended manner are harmed as a result. In Schmitz v. J&J
, Superior Court of the State of California, Alameda, Case No. RG18923615, the jury returned a substantial verdict to a California woman who contracted mesothelioma after using talcum-powder products that were manufactured by Johnson & Johnson and Colgate for decades.
Factual and procedural background
Patricia Schmitz, a former fifth-grade teacher, is a 61-year-old California woman. Her mother applied baby powder containing talc when she was an infant. Beginning when she was 13, Schmitz began using talc-based products daily after her shower. She used Colgate-Palmolive’s Cashmere Bouquet on a daily basis from the time that she was 13 until the 2000s. She also used Avon’s Night Magic at some point in time. Her mother had used Johnson & Johnson’s baby powder on her when she was an infant.