FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
OnderLaw Attorney James Onder Calls Settlement “A Slap in the Face to Victims,” Continues to Prepare for Trial
(ST. LOUIS, MO) June 24, 2020 – Though Bayer is representing it has agreed to settle with approximately 95,000 plaintiffs in claims that Monsanto’s Roundup weedkiller caused non-Hodgkin lymphoma, St. Louis attorney James Onder says he will not back down in his fight against the corporate giant.
“There are still over 30,000 unsettled cases, of which our firm represents over 24,000,” said Onder Wednesday, June 24, the day the settlement was announced. “The unsettled legal exposure to Bayer could easily exceed tens of billions of dollars, as our firm and others have rejected the miniscule offers accepted by some other firms.”
The reported $8.8 to $9.6 billion settlement proposed by Bayer, which purchased St. Louis-based Monsanto for $63 billion in 2018, would leave many plaintiffs with only $5,000 to $10,000 in compensation for cancers caused by glyphosate, the active ingredient in Roundup. “Our trial teams will continue holding Bayer accountable in Roundup trials nationwide until such time as Bayer offers compensation consistent with the injuries our clients have suffered,” said Onder.
The settlement resulted after Bayer lost all three bellwether trials in mass tort litigation. In 2018, a California jury awarded Dewayne Johnson, a school groundskeeper, $289 million after concluding Monsanto failed to warn him and other consumers of the risks of using glyphosate. In March 2019, a federal court jury in California awarded Edwin Hardeman, a homeowner who used Roundup on his lawn for years, $80 million. Two months later, another California jury awarded Alva and Alberta Pilliod more than $2 billion after deciding Monsanto’s Roundup was responsible for causing the couple’s cancer after they used it on their property for decades.
According to Onder, Bayer has been under considerable pressure from disenchanted shareholders to settle the cases following the losses, and today’s announcement encompasses premature celebration on the part of the corporation. “To act as if one quarter of the Roundup cancer victims don’t exist is a flagrant attempt by Bayer to manipulate its stock price, and serves as a slap in the face to the many cancer victims whose lives have been destroyed,” said Onder.
Under the settlement rejected by Onder and several other attorneys, Bayer would continue to sell glyphosate in the United States, and the company would not be required to add a warning to Roundup labels.
“That’s not how we work,” said Onder. “As attorneys representing tens of thousands of clients, we see the damage this chemical has done to people’s lives. We listen to hard-working Americans when they tell us they’ve lost everything they own because they’re faced with medical bills and an inability to work due to the pain and treatments they’re undergoing. We listen to family members who have lost loved ones in the most painful and preventable way possible. We’ll continue to fight for justice for them, and to change the way Bayer does business so that more innocent people don’t have to suffer. Our firm has done it with other industries in the past, and we plan to do it again.”
The fact that hundreds of thousands of people have developed non-Hodgkin lymphoma after long-term use of Roundup is backed by the World Health Organization, which found glyphosate to be a probable cause of cancer. The chemical has been banned in dozens of countries worldwide, as well as many United States municipalities. Still, it continues to be used in most parts of the U.S.
Jim Onder is the senior member and founder of OnderLaw . Since founding the firm in August of 2002, Jim has distinguished himself and compiled an impressive record of success, working with his partners to collect over $3.5 billion on behalf of those he’s represented.
Jim is a 1985 graduate of Washington University School of Business Administration, where he was a member of the Beta Gamma Sigma honor society and a recipient of the McWilliams Writing Award. He completed his education at St. Louis University School of Law in 1988, where he graduated with honors. He is a member of the Order of the Woolsack, awarded to the top 10% of the law school class. While at St. Louis University, Jim was on both St. Louis University’s Law Journal and Public Law Review.
Jim is widely recognized as the national advocate and authority on mini-blind and window covering safety, as well as in mass tort litigations against some of the country’s largest corporations, including Monsanto and Johnson & Johnson. While licensed to practice in Missouri and Illinois, firms throughout the country seek out Jim’s particular expertise in the field of product liability. He is on the Board of Governors for the Missouri Association of Trial Attorneys and is involved in voluminous political and community activities.
OnderLaw is located at 110 E. Lockwood, St. Louis, MO 63119.