The makers of African Pride Olive Miracle hair relaxers, Godrej Consumer Goods, are facing product liability claims from women who claim that their cancer was caused by the repeated use of these products. Godrej Consumer Goods, like other major beauty companies, has refused to place warning labels on their products, despite a growing scientific consensus that using chemical hair relaxers increases the risk of certain cancers.
Plaintiffs have filed hair relaxer uterine cancer lawsuits to seek compensation for the physical, emotional, and financial losses they have sustained. If you have been diagnosed with cancer of the reproductive system and have a history of using chemical hair relaxers, you may be eligible to file a hair relaxer cancer lawsuit. A product liability lawyer will be able to provide the legal insight and resources you need to maximize your compensation.
Chemical Hair Relaxers Increase the Risk of Cancer
A number of endocrine-disrupting chemicals have been found in chemical hair relaxers. These findings are not new, as previous studies have already established that chemical hair relaxers contain carcinogens. Emerging research is building on this information. An NIH study that was published in October 2022 concluded that women who use chemical hair relaxers 4 or more times a year are at twice the risk of developing uterine cancer.
The increased risk of certain hormone-sensitive cancers has been attributed to the endocrine-disrupting chemicals that cause an imbalance. The endocrine-disrupting chemicals cause cancer by mimicking estrogen, a hormone that can trigger unregulated cell growth in the female reproductive system when it is present in abnormally high levels.
Chemical Hair Relaxer Related Injuries
The long-term use of chemical hair relaxers like African Pride Oil Miracle has been linked to several injuries, including:
As established in multiple studies, the more frequently a chemical hair relaxer is used, the higher a woman’s risk of developing reproductive health issues is. That means that Black women, who make up 60% of the group that the National Health Institute identified as high-frequency users, are at a greater risk. Black women also have lower survival rates for reproductive cancers like ovarian cancer, and they tend to develop more aggressive forms of these reproductive cancers.
Women File Product Liability Claims Against Chemical Hair Relaxer Makers
To offset the costs of their cancer treatment and hold negligent companies accountable, women have filed claims against the makers of chemical hair relaxers. Plaintiffs in the chemical hair relaxer cancer lawsuits argue that the defendants had a legal obligation to provide warning labels alerting women to the increased risk of cancer linked to frequent usage of their products. In addition to Godrej Consumer Goods, the hair relaxer lawsuit defendants include:
- SoftSheen Carson
- Strength of Nature
- Namaste Laboratories
- Cantu Beauty
Plaintiffs push for their claims to be considered as a multidistrict litigation, as it would be extremely time-consuming and logistically complicated to pursue individual claims against defendants. The defendants have protested that too many companies have been named and the plaintiffs have not identified which specific products are allegedly responsible for their cancer. The Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation held a hearing to allow both sides to argue their perspectives in January 2023. It was ultimately decided that the plaintiffs’ claims of negligence and their injuries were similar enough to proceed with a multidistrict litigation.
Recovering Damages in a Chemical Hair Relaxer Lawsuit
The damages in the hair relaxer cancer lawsuits are likely to be significant. This is due in part to the act that the most effective treatment for most of these cancers is a hysterectomy. A hysterectomy is a surgery that removes the uterus, and sometimes other parts of the female reproductive system. This renders a woman unable to have children.
In addition to the costs typically associated with this invasive procedure, such as medical bills, wages lost while in recovery, and transportation, there is often a profound psychological impact. In a product liability claim, plaintiffs can recover compensation for both their financial and emotional losses in the form of economic and non-economic damages, respectively.
Examples of Damages in a Chemical hair Relaxer Cancer Lawsuit:
- Medical bills
- Lab tests
- Radiation therapy
- Hormone therapy
- Hospital stays
- Job-related losses
- Lost wages
- Reduced earning capacity
- Missed promotions
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of quality of life
- Loss of consortium
- Wrongful death
- Funeral and burial expenses
- Loss of services and support
- Loss of parental guidance and instruction
The damages you are entitled to recover will reflect how your cancer has impacted your life. Women who lose the ability to have children before they are mothers, women who suffer career setbacks, and families who lose a member to chemical hair relaxer-related cancer are more likely to receive larger settlements as compared to those who are treated in early stages with limited complications and are post-menopause. A product liability attorney can help you calculate the value of your claim and ensure you receive a fair settlement.
Plaintiffs Seek Compensation in Chemical Hair Relaxer Lawsuits
Due to the volume of product liability lawsuits filed against the makers of chemical hair relaxers, the Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation decided to consolidate the claims into a multidistrict litigation to streamline the claims process. The cases were then transferred to the jurisdiction of U.S. District Judge Mary M. Rowland of the Northern District of Illinois.
Meanwhile, the number of chemical hair relaxer lawsuits filed against companies like Godrej Consumers Goods continues to grow. Plaintiffs need to prove that chemical hair relaxer makers were negligent when they breached their duty of care to consumers by forgoing a warning label. They also have to be able to demonstrate that this negligence led them to develop cancer, and resulted in their damages.
Women who have used chemical hair relaxers and have been diagnosed with cancer of the reproductive system should consult a product liability attorney as soon as possible to avoid missing the deadline to file a claim. Hiring a product liability lawyer has additional benefits, such as lending credibility to your claim and having a dedicated expert to manage your claim full-time. A chemical hair relaxer cancer attorney can help determine what your settlement is worth and negotiate on your behalf to maximize your compensation.