Risperdal’s manufacturer, Janssen Pharmaceuticals (a subsidiary of Johnson & Johnson), was slapped with a whopping $70 million verdict in its latest Risperdal trial. With more than 1,700 additional lawsuits, you would think Janssen might be sweating bullets, but this is far from the truth.
Janssen and Johnson & Johnson (J&J) have already paid out massive funds over Risperdal side effects. In 2012, the companies agreed to pay $158 million to settle claims in Texas that the company defrauded the Medicaid program by illegally marketing Risperdal for uses not approved by the FDA.
The next year, the companies paid $2.2 billion to the U.S. Justice Department to settle criminal claims the companies illegally marketed the drug for off-label use in children and the elderly.
The first Risperdal trial in February 2015 awarded the plaintiff $2.5 million. Subsequent trials awarded $1.75 million and $500,000 to the plaintiffs. The most recent jury award was by far the largest verdict at $70 million.
Risperdal was a blockbuster hit for Janssen and Johnson & Johnson (J&J). In 2007, the companies reported annual sales of $4.5 billion for Risperdal. If you’re doing the math, Janssen and J&J have only paid out just over half of Risperdal’s revenue for one year. Having already made billions in revenue from Risperdal, these payouts are a drop in the bucket.
Although Janssen’s pockets are deep enough to endure Risperdal trials and settlements, the company may not be able to withstand mounting lawsuits over two of its other drugs, Invokana and Xarelto. While the Invokana lawsuits are still in the early stages, the Xarelto litigation is nearing 6,000 lawsuits and the first cases will go trial in early 2017. If nothing else, Janssen will have a lot to answer for in the upcoming litigations.