A Los Angeles jury has awarded a 76-year-old woman and her husband more than $50 million in damages for the cancer she said she got from using Avon cosmetics containing asbestos-tainted talc, according to a pair of verdicts.
The jury found that Avon Products Inc.’s negligence in manufacturing its cosmetics was a substantial factor in causing harm to Rita Chapman, according to the first verdict. The jury also found that Hyster-Yale Group Inc., the successor-in-interest to a forklift manufacturer, was partially responsible for her cancer. It assigned 90% of the blame to Avon, and 10% to Hyster-Yale.
The jury awarded Chapman $32.8 million in compensatory damages and her husband an additional $8 million. After that verdict was returned, a second phase of the trial commenced, and punitive damages were awarded. According to that verdict, the jury awarded an additional $11.3 million in punitive damages. Avon must pay $10.3 million of those while Hyster-Yale owes $1 million. (Law360)
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