In March 2015, the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) declared that glyphosate, the active ingredient in Roundup, the world’s most popular weed killer, is “probably carcinogenic to humans.” Studies have suggested a connection between the chemical and several deadly health conditions, including leukemia and non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. According to ConsumerSafety.org, “Monsanto is now facing over 380 pending lawsuits” from people who used Roundup and became ill. However, attorneys who regularly manage this type of toxic tort litigation expect the number of plaintiffs to grow to more than 3,500.
So, what groups of people are most likely to have suffered an adverse health effect from glyphosate or Roundup? Given the product’s use in agriculture, industry, and homes across the country, a Roundup plaintiff is likely to have been:
- An agricultural worker — Roundup has been the most widely used herbicide in the world since 2007. Agricultural workers in more than 160 countries have applied the weed killer to crops and have toiled in the fields where glyphosate was sprayed. Many of these workers labor in poor conditions, so safety protocols are lax and facilities to wash the chemical off clothing and exposed skin are in short supply.
- A landscaper — Roundup is used to kill weeds in public parks, along roadways, and on playing fields. Commercial landlords use the chemical to kill invasive weeds in the curtilage of office parks and shopping malls. Landscaping services catering to private homes use Roundup on lawns and gardens. Workers’ exposure is continuous, and few employers train their workers on safety protocols or provide safety equipment that can limit exposure.
- A homeowner — Monsanto markets Roundup directly to consumers. The company does not admit its product’s link to cancer, so there are no warnings on Roundup labels. Thus, many homeowners believe the chemical is absolutely safe and take no special precautions when handling or storing the product.
If you or a loved one has developed leukemia or non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma after using Roundup weed killer, you may have grounds for a products liability lawsuit to recover compensation. If a loved one has died, you may have standing to pursue a wrongful death claim. However, you must act before your state’s statute of limitations bars you from filing suit.
Marcari, Russotto, Spencer & Balaban represents clients in toxic tort and products liability cases, including Monsanto Roundup actions, throughout Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina and West Virginia. Our attorneys have more than 200 years of combined experience. Call us at (855) 435-7247 or contact us online to schedule a free consultation.