What is the Deadline to File a Hair Relaxer Lawsuit?

What is the Deadline to File a Hair Relaxer Lawsuit?
What is the Deadline to File a Hair Relaxer Lawsuit?

Makers of chemical hair relaxers are facing intense scrutiny as an alarming National Institute of Health study asserted their products cause multiple types of cancer and other injuries to women’s reproductive systems. As a result, women who have developed breast cancer, uterine cancer, or other illnesses related to the carcinogens found in these defective hair care products have begun filing product liability lawsuits. In these claims, they name companies like L’Oreal. Plaintiffs may be able to recover costs like their medical expenses and lost wages, as well as pain and suffering.

If you have developed uterine or breast cancer and have a history of exposure to chemical hair straighteners, you may be able to seek compensation in a product liability lawsuit. Contacting a personal injury lawyer who has experience negotiating product liability claims should be your next step after seeking medical attention.

When to File a Hair Relaxer Cancer Lawsuit

Product liability claims like these can take months or even years to settle, so it is in your best interest to file your hair relaxer cancer lawsuit as soon as possible. We recommend this for two reasons. First of all, in order for your claim to be considered valid, it needs to be filed within a certain time frame. 

In Florida, the statute of limitations for product liability allows plaintiffs to seek damages for 4 years from the date of injury, or 2 years after a wrongful death has occurred. There may be additional stipulations in certain circumstances, and the statute of limitations can vary by state, so you should speak with a product liability attorney for clarification.

The second reason to file a claim promptly is that the sooner you file a claim for damages, the closer you are to potentially receive compensation. Medical debt and lost wages can be a heavy burden, as can non-economic losses. When you hire a product liability lawyer, they can begin the work of recovering those damages for you by investigating, compiling evidence, calculating the value of your damages, and advocating for appropriate compensation.

Current Status of the Hair Relaxer Cancer Lawsuits

On January 23rd, a hearing will be held to determine whether or not the hair relaxer cancer lawsuits that have been filed should be condensed into a single class action lawsuit. This would allow plaintiffs to share the burden of the discovery process, and standardize settlements.  It is not uncommon for plaintiffs to petition the court to consolidate their individual claims into a class action lawsuit if the injuries and damages are similar.

Multiple Types of Cancer Connected to the Use of Chemical Hair Relaxers

Multiple studies have revealed the alarming connection between the toxic estrogen-like chemicals present in hair relaxers and various types of cancer of the reproductive system. In the most recent NIH study, researchers examined data collected from a larger study known as the Sister Study. The Sister Study examined the habits of over 30,000 women in the U.S. who had a sister who had been diagnosed with breast cancer. 

They found that among women who reported using chemical hair straighteners 4 or more times a year, their risk of developing uterine cancer was double that of other women in the study. They emphasized that Black women are at a higher risk of developing cancer from these products because they are the primary demographic that heavily uses them.

Illnesses Associated with Long-Term Chemical hair Straightener Use

While this particular study specified the risk of uterine cancer, researchers have already noted that these products increased a woman’s risk of developing breast cancer. The key connection to be made between these types of cancer is that they are both caused by a hormone imbalance of estrogen. The chemicals present in hair relaxers are similar enough to estrogen, which upsets the body’s hormone balance and causes various forms of cancer and other health issues. Thus far, the long-term use of chemical hair straighteners has been associated with the following conditions

Damages in a Chemical Hair Straightener Lawsuit

Unfortunately, many women experience profound financial consequences, as well as non-economic losses, as a result of developing cancer. These costs can be reimbursed in a product liability lawsuit in the form of compensatory damages. Economic damages are one of two types of compensatory damages. They reimburse plaintiffs for financial losses that have an established market value.

For this specific group of claims, non-economic damages are likely to be highlighted. The injuries associated with long-term usage of chemical hair straighteners are known to cause issues with fertility and even pregnancy, in addition to the pain and suffering associated with cancer treatments. Non-economic damages are subjectively calculated as they typically refer to emotional losses.

Examples of Damages in a Hair Relaxer Cancer Lawsuit:

  • Medical expenses
    • Surgery
    • Chemotherapy
    • Hospital stays
    • Medication
    • Radiation
    • Hormone therapy
  • Job-related losses
    • Reduced earning capacity
    • Lost wages
  • Pain and suffering
  • Loss of quality of life
  • Loss of consortium

Proving Liability in a Chemical Hair Relaxer Claim

Multiple makers of chemical hair relaxers are facing allegations that they breached their duty of care to consumers. These obligations to the public are outlined by the FDA standards they must meet, which include ensuring that their products do not contain significant levels of carcinogens. Additionally, they are responsible for proving a label alerting consumers to the risks of using their products.

The women who have filed product liability lawsuits against these companies argue that they were aware or should have known exactly how dangerous their products are, yet they continued to market them without warning labels. In many cases, women did not develop cancer until they had been using the chemical hair straighteners for years, or even decades, increasing their chances with every use. This negligence should not go unanswered. 

A qualified personal injury lawyer is best suited to help you establish liability and calculate the value of your damages in a chemical hair relaxer cancer lawsuit. They will handle negotiations, leverage evidence, and advocate for compensation for your damages. You can contact our team for a free consultation to discuss the details of your case and receive information about the services we offer our clients.


Matthew Dolman

Personal Injury Lawyer

This article was written and reviewed by Matthew Dolman. Matt has been a practicing civil trial, personal injury, products liability, and mass tort lawyer since 2004. He has represented over 11,000 injury victims and has served as lead counsel in over 1000 lawsuits. Matt is a lifetime member of the Million Dollar Advocates Forum and Multi-Million Dollar Advocates Forum for resolving individual cases in excess of $1 million and $2 million, respectively. He has also been selected by his colleagues as a Florida Superlawyer and as a member of Florida’s Legal Elite on multiple occasions. Further, Matt has been quoted in the media numerous times and is a sought-after speaker on a variety of legal issues and topics.

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