First released in 1973, Monsanto’s Roundup herbicide was hailed as a revolution in weed management. Whereas earlier herbicides posed known health risks, Roundup was thought to be totally safe. Unfortunately, this was far from true. In fact, the main ingredient in Roundup, glyphosate, has now been designated as a human carcinogen by the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC).
The IARC finding was a game-changer. As it turns out, anyone who regularly used Roundup is at risk for developing cancer, especially non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. These individuals include farm workers, gardeners, landscapers, and everyday folks who used Roundup to keep their lawn free of weeds.
A cancer diagnosis can be devastating, most importantly for health reasons. It can take a toll not just on the person who is sick, but for all of their loved ones. Moreover, cancer treatments are expensive. Medical bills add up, and even the treatment can be debilitating. Exhaustion from chemotherapy and the time spent in the hospital can lead to lost wages. As a result, thousands of Americans are suing Monsanto, which is now part of Bayer.
Why is There a Roundup Cancer Lawsuit?
Americans use dangerous products every day as part of their work. For example, construction workers routinely work with dangerous chemicals. And as the COVID-19 pandemic has reminded us, doctors and nurses put themselves at risk every day on the job. So why are people able to file a Roundup lawsuit in particular? Isn’t it just one of those risky things that people are exposed to?
The answer is that construction workers, doctors, and nurses are aware of the risks. When using dangerous chemicals or treating sick patients, they’re able to take proper safety precautions to minimize that risk. Unfortunately, Monsanto claimed for many years that Roundup was “safer than table salt.”
But in March of 2015, the IARC published a survey on previously published glyphosate research. In their survey, they stated that glyphosate is “probably carcinogenic to humans”. Furthermore, the IARC stated that non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma is cancer most likely to result from glyphosate exposure.
Starting in 2017, courts began ordering Monsanto to release internal documents about their own research on Roundup. These documents, now known as the Monsanto Papers, prove that Monsanto knew the risks of using glyphosate, even as they continued to tout its safety.
To date, over 40,000 people have now filed a Roundup lawsuit against Monsanto (now Bayer). Some of these lawsuits have been individual lawsuits, while others have been class action lawsuits.
In 2019, the first of those lawsuits began to wind down. In one case, a jury determined that Roundup was a “substantial factor” in causing a 70-year-old man to develop non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma.
CBS News report on Edwin Hardeman’s suit:
What Other Health Problems Can Roundup Cause?
Not only can Roundup cause cancer, it can cause other health risks. The mechanism glyphosate uses to kill weeds is by interfering with a metabolic process called the “shikimate pathway.” The shikimate pathway is one method by which cells synthesize certain amino acids. When used on plants, it essentially causes them to starve to death.
Unfortunately, many of our healthy gut bacteria also rely on the shikimate pathway. According to a 2013 study, exposure to glyphosate by inadvertent ingestion could disrupt a person’s normal gut bacteria and digestive health.
What Could I be Entitled to From a Roundup Lawsuit?
If you have suffered from non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma or another disease due to Roundup exposure, you may be entitled to the following damages:
- Medical expenses, both past and future
- Loss of wages, both past and future
- Pain and suffering
- Other economic losses such as travel and hotel bills for treatment
- Punitive damages
If you have lost a spouse, parent, or child to cancer as a result of Roundup exposure, you may be entitled to damages for wrongful death.
At this time, there are over 18,000 individuals suing Monsanto in state courts throughout the country. As of yet, there has not yet been a mass tort settlement, and Monsanto has not been forced to set up any kind of fund to pay future torts. That said, three individual cases have now been adjudicated. In total, juries awarded more than $2 billion in damages to the three individuals who were affected.
If you or a loved one suffers from cancer that may be due to Roundup, it’s important to have the right legal representation. Contact our legal team at SL Chapman LLC for a free consultation. You can call us at (800)-851-5523, or email us at info@SLChapman.com.