If you or a loved one has been exposed to the weedkiller Roundup and have been diagnosed with non-Hodgkins lymphoma (NHL) or another cancer, you may want to have a consultation with a Roundup weedkiller attorney. You could be entitled to compensation in some cases. Below is more information about the weedkiller and how you can get your free Roundup case evaluation to determine if your situation could result in a valid legal claim.
Also below are more details about the controversy surrounding Roundup, the active ingredient glyphosate, and its potential link to NHL and other cancers.
Roundup Exposure and Cancer Problems
Roundup is the most widely used herbicide in the world for killing grass and weeds. The weed killer was been made and distributed by Monsanto since the 1970s. The major ingredient is glyphosate, which is a broad spectrum herbicide.
Monsanto able to capitalize on the effectiveness of glyphosate by producing genetically altered crops that are resistant to the herbicide. However, many weeds become more resistant to the herbicide as the years pass, so farmers have to use more Roundup to have the same effects as before. This leads to farmers and agriculture workers increasing their exposure over time, which can lead to health problems, including possible development of NHL.
Possible Cancer Risk – the IARC Report
Several studies have confirmed the general use of Roundup and other herbicides containing glyphosate to a higher risk of lymphatic cancer, which attacks the lymph nodes in the body. The lymphatic system is a vital part of the immune system. It helps to carry vital nutrients to cells. NHL is the most well known and common form of lymphatic cancer.
A review published by the WHO’s IRAC in May 2015 in The Lancet Oncology looked closely at studies on mice and humans that had been exposed to glyphosate, which is the active ingredient in Roundup and many other popular weed killers.
Three studies on humans were featured in the IARC review, including a study in the US in 2003, one in Canada from 2001, and one in Sweden from 2008. All of these clinical studies appeared to indicate there could be a higher risk of NHL from Roundup and exposure to glyphosate in humans. The WHO thus concluded that Roundup is a probable human carcinogen. (IARC.fr).
Also, glyphosate has been found in the urine and blood of farmers and agricultural workers. Other studies the IARC reviewed found that glyphosate can cause DNA damage in many mammals, and also to animal and human cells in the womb. In the animal tests, IARC researchers determined that mice that were exposed to glyphosate could develop skin tumors, and other cancers.
Current Lawsuit Could Determine Fate of Hundreds of Other Legal Actions
If you decide eventually to have your Roundup case reviewed in a free case evaluation by an attorney, be aware there are ongoing lawsuits across the country that could affect the potential outcome and compensation in your case.
There is a case ongoing as of February 2019 in federal court in San Francisco that will determined if Roundup caused a man’s cancer in the state. Plaintiffs’ attorneys are saying this case could help to determine what the fate will be for hundreds of related lawsuits.
Edwin Hardeman, 70, is the second plaintiff in in the state to go to trial of thousands of others across the country who are claiming that Monsanto’s weed killer causes cancer. According to Monsanto, clinical studies have shown that its products are safe. (Chicagotribune.com).
The plaintiff’s attorney disagrees. Hardeman’s attorney, Brent Wisner told the media last week there is a huge amount of evidence that shows the pesticide can cause cancer. He added that Monsanto should be honest with consumers and say there is evidence the product may cause cancer, and people should be able to make a choice about whether to use the product or not.
According to his attorney, Hardeman began to use Roundup products to deal with poison oak, weeds and overgrowth on his Sonoma County property in the 1980s. He continued to use Roundup through 2012. He was diagnosed with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma in 2015.
This federal court was the one where another jury in August 2018 awarded another worker $289 million after it determined that Roundup had caused his cancer. Another judge eventually reduced that award to $78 million, and Monsanto has appealed that decision.
In the Hardeman case, a successful outcome is far from assured. An attorney that is representing Monsanto at trial stated during the opening of the case that the plaintiff had major risk factors, such as a diagnosis for Hepatitis B and C, old age and obesity. The attorney also pointed to data from a long term study of agricultural workers called the Agriculture Health Study, which determined that levels of NHL among people exposed to glyphosate were not much different from those in the overall US population. He also noted that NHL diagnoses have remained fairly steady at 70,000 per year, even as Roundup use has grown by several magnitudes since the early 1990s. (law.com).
Potential Bellwether Cases Could Lead to More Litigation
Some legal experts say that the Hardeman trial in front of a new judge could be even more significant for future litigation than the previous $289 million verdict. US Judge Vince Chhabria is doing the oversight of hundreds of lawsuits involving Roundup, and has said that Hareeman’s case and two others are major bellwethers.
Wisner said that if the Hardeman trial succeeds it will send a strong signal to Monsanto that they have a major legal problem. It could cause more litigants to come out of the woodwork and to consult with attorneys to see if they have a case against Monsanto.
The outcome of such bellwether cases can help personal injury attorneys to decide if it is worth it to continue to fighting on related lawsuits in court or to settle. If the jury’s verdict is favorable to Hardeman and the other two plaintiffs later, it would give their lawyers a much stronger bargaining position in settlement discussions for any of the cases that remain before Chhabria, according to David Levine, who is a professor at the University of California.
Thousands of other lawsuits involving Roundup are still pending across the country in state courts. As more cases are heard and reach a successful outcome for the plaintiff’s, it is possible that other litigants will be more likely to achieve legal success as well.
Free Legal Representation for Roundup Cases
Most consumers who have been diagnosed with NHL and suspect Roundup exposure is the cause can usually get a free case evaluation from a personal injury attorney. Roundup personal injury attorneys usually work on a contingency basis. A client pays an attorney a contingency fee to the attorney only if the case is successfully handled. Clients and attorneys use this type of legal arrangement only in cases where money is going to be claimed, such as in most personal injury lawsuits. (Americanbar.org).
In a contingency fee arrangement, the attorney will agree to take a fixed amount of the recovery – which can be a verdict or settlement award. If you prevail in the case, the fee for the attorney comes from the money you are awarded. If you lose the case, neither you or the attorney receive compensation, but you are not required to pay the lawyer another for the work they did on the case.
This means that you can have your case evaluated at no cost, and if you agree to have the attorney represent you, you are not charged anything unless the attorney wins a settlement or verdict.
In that case, the attorney’s fee is deducted from your compensation; that fee can vary but it typically is 33% of monies recovered if the case settled before trial, and 40% if the case settled after it went to trial or a verdict was reached.
The first thing you should do after you have been diagnosed with NHL is to take your medical records to your attorney and get a free case evaluation. The attorney also will want details about your work history to determine when and if you were exposed to the weedkiller.
If you think that you have been harmed by exposure to Roundup, the first step is to find a qualified Roundup attorney in your area. He or she should be able to provide you with a free case evaluation right away, which will then determine if further legal action is warranted. Remember that the case evaluation is free, so you have nothing to lose by talking to an attorney.
- Monsanto Roundup Cancer Trial. (2019). Retrieved from https://www.chicagotribune.com/business/ct-biz-monsanto-roundup-cancer-trial-20190226-story.html
- IARC Monograph on Glyphosate. (2015). Retrieved from https://www.iarc.fr/featured-news/media-centre-iarc-news-glyphosate/
- Contingency Fee Overview. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://www.americanbar.org/groups/public_education/resources/law_issues_for_consumers/lawyerfees_contingent/
- As First Roundup MDL Trial Opens, Judge Threatens Plaintiff’s Attorney with Sanctions. (2019). Retrieved from https://www.reuters.com/article/us-bayer-glyphosate-lawsuit/u-s-trial-tests-claims-roundup-weed-killer-caused-cancer-idUSKCN1QD0I8