Press Releases

Cohen Milstein Joins Prosecution of Novel ERISA Class Action Against Johnson & Johnson

March 19, 2024

JOHNSON & JOHNSON accused of mismanaging the prescription drug program in its health plan – costing employees millions

Washington, DC – Cohen Milstein Sellers & Toll PLLC, a premier national plaintiffs’ class action law firm, recently joined plaintiff’s legal team in Lewandowski v. Johnson and Johnson, 3:24-cv-00671 (D.N.J.), a novel class action filed in federal court in New Jersey by Fairmark Partners LLP and Wheeler, Diulio & Barnabel, P.C.

Lead plaintiff Ann Lewandowski, a current employee of Johnson & Johnson (NYSE: JNJ), accuses the pharmaceutical giant of mismanaging its own health plans’ prescription drug program, costing employees millions of dollars in the form of higher payments for prescription drugs, higher out-of-pocket costs and co-pays, and, ultimately, lower wages in violation of the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA).

The Complaint focuses, in part, on the prices charged for so-called “specialty drugs” purchased through a specialty pharmacy, Accredo, that is affiliated with Johnson & Johnson’s pharmacy benefits manager (PBM), Express Scripts. The complaint cites a specific example of a 90-pill prescription for the generic drug teriflunomide (the generic form of Aubagio used to treat multiple sclerosis). The Complaint alleges a prescription cost $40.55 at Wegmans, $41.05 at ShopRite, $76.41 at Walmart, $77.41 at Rite Aid, and $28.40 at Cost Plus Drugs online pharmacy (without insurance), while the same 90-pill prescription costs Johnson & Johnson health plan participants $10,239.69. In addition, the Complaint includes many other examples of drugs that are overpriced.

“We are honored to be invited to join this groundbreaking ERISA class action,” said Michelle C. Yau, co-chair of Cohen Milstein’s Employee Benefits/ERISA practice. “Hard-working employees and retirees on fixed incomes cannot afford to overpay for prescription drugs, especially in today’s inflationary environment. Plan sponsors like Johnson & Johnson have a responsibility to prudently monitor health plan costs and ensure that those costs are reasonable. Prescription drug costs are part of those costs, and we believe it is important to hold Johnson and Johnson accountable for allowing the allegedly excessive drug markups here.”

The Complaint seeks to stop Johnson & Johnson from mismanaging its prescription drug program and to recover excess payments on behalf of Johnson & Johnson’s health plans and the participants and beneficiaries of those plans.

How can I learn more and possibly join the case? If you are a current or former Johnson & Johnson employee and participated in one of Johnson & Johnson’s health plans, you may have been impacted. Cohen Milstein is in the process of interviewing current and former employees of Johnson & Johnson as part of its ongoing investigation. If you do not already have legal counsel and you are interested in learning more about the lawsuit and whether you may qualify to participate, please call 202.408.4600 or PLEASE CLICK HERE TO LEARN MORE ABOUT THE CASE INVESTIGATION.

About Michelle C. Yau and Michael Eisenkraft

Michelle Yau, chair of the Cohen Milstein’s Employee Benefits/ERISA practice is licensed to practice in Massachusetts and Washington, D.C., and has been admitted pro hac vice in the Lewandowski matter in in the District of New Jersey, Case No. 1:23-cv-00671. Ms. Yau’s years of experience of protecting retirement and employee health plan assets is informed by her Wall Street and U.S. Department of Labor experience. Read more here: Michelle C. Yau – Cohen Milstein

Michael Eisenkraft is a member of Cohen Milstein’s Executive Committee, the head of its New York office, and is licensed to practice in New York and New Jersey. In addition to the Lewandowski matter, Mr. Eisenkraft is prosecuting several other innovative cases and recently secured $580 million in settlements in the Stock Lending litigation. Read more here: Michael B. Eisenkraft – Cohen Milstein

About Cohen Milstein

Cohen Milstein Sellers & Toll PLLC, a premier U.S. plaintiffs’ law firm, with over 100 attorneys across eight offices, champions the causes of real people – workers, consumers, small business owners, investors, and whistleblowers – working to deliver corporate reforms and fair markets for the common good. For more information visit


Sydney Greenman (paralegal)

Cohen Milstein Sellers & Toll PLLC

1100 New York Avenue, N.W., Suite 500

Washington, D.C. 20005

Telephone: 888-240-0775 (Toll Free) or 202-408-4600



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