Supreme Court Rejects Bayer’s Appeal of Roundup Victims’ Award
The Supreme Court will not review the decision of a lower court to award $87 million to two California Roundup victims. Alva and Alberta Pilliod originally received $2 billion in damages before a California judge reduced the verdict to $87 million. The Pilliods argued that they both faced non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma after using Roundup for years. (Reuters)
This marks the court’s second recent decision not to review Bayer’s appeal of a weedkiller lawsuit’s outcome. The decision also comes on the heels of a federal court order directing the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to reconsider its designation of glyphosate—the active ingredient in Roundup—as non-carcinogenic.
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Bayer Facing Billions in Liability for Weedkiller Lawsuits
While Bayer has already settled over 100,000 Roundup lawsuits, over 30,000 cases remain to see a resolution. (Bayer) Amid substantial plaintiffs’ verdicts, such as the original $2 billion verdict for the Pilliods, Bayer settled the majority of cases for nearly $10 billion in total, per National Public Radio (NPR).
Bayer sought to shut down the remaining 30,000 cases with a favorable Supreme Court ruling—which the company did not secure. In addition to the Pilliod case, the Supreme Court refused to reconsider a $25 million verdict for Edwin Hardeman. (CNBC) In a 2021 press release, Bayer said that it would set aside an additional $4.5 billion to resolve the remaining Roundup cases if the Supreme Court rejected its appeal of these major verdicts.
The biggest awards for Roundup plaintiffs reflected substantial punitive damages. The lawyer for Alva and Alberta Pilliod argued for $1 billion for each of the Pilliods, reasoning that this reflected the company’s annual profit in 2017.
EPA Ordered to Reconsider Non-Cancerous Designation of Glyphosate
Earlier last month, a U.S. Court of Appeals found that the EPA must review its safety assessment of Roundup’s active ingredient, glyphosate.
In 2020, the EPA announced its conclusion that glyphosate posed no risk to human health and the ingredient is not carcinogenic, meaning it does not cause cancer. However, Roundup litigation has revealed significant evidence that glyphosate is dangerous to public health and can be linked to cancer in farmworkers, groundskeepers, and others who faced long-term exposure to the weedkiller.
Additionally, internal company documents from Monsanto—the original maker of Roundup—have shown that the company actively promoted misinformation about the product’s safety. (The Guardian) Among other efforts, Monsanto scientists published papers on glyphosate under other authors’ names. These scientific papers created by the industry formed the basis of the EPA’s decision to designate glyphosate as non-threatening to public health.
Get Legal Help if You Were Hurt By Roundup or Another Dangerous Product
If Roundup or another toxic product harmed you, you could seek justice and compensation. People who can show that they faced a cancer diagnosis as a result of using Roundup can seek damages for the medical bills, lost earnings, and other losses.
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