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State To Receive $3.5 Million From Company

Attorney General Austin Knudsen has announced that Montana will receive over $3.5 million in a multi-state settlement with Johnson & Johnson to resolve allegations the company manufactured, marketed and knowingly sold baby powder tainted with carcinogenic asbestos.

Montana will receive $3,537,515 of the total $700,000,000 multi-state settlement. Johnson & Johnson also agreed to cease the manufacturing, marketing, promotion, sale, and distribution of all baby, body, and cosmetic powder products and not to do so through a third party.

“Johnson & Johnson violated Montana’s consumer protection laws, but worse put the health and safety of consumers at risk. The company’s actions are unacceptable and I’m glad we could help to hold them accountable,” Knudsen said.

The settlement holds Johnson & Johnson accountable for manufacturing and selling talc body powder products and marketing them as safe for daily use by consumers, while knowing the asbestos contained in the products could cause cancer. The company continued to manufacture, sell, and market the product for decades knowing it was harmful.

In his complaint against Johnson & Johnson, Attorney General Knudsen states that the company’s actions violated Montana’s Unfair Trade Practices and Consumer Protection Acts when they misrepresented the sponsorship, approval, characteristics, benefits or qualities of their talc powder products; and when they misrepresented the safety of talc products.

Montana is scheduled to begin receiving payments from the settlement July 30, and will receive payments through 2027.

The funds will be dispersed at the discretion of Knudsen and can be used for restitution and grants for the Children’s Advocacy Centers of Montana.

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