US-based pharmaceutical company Johnson & Johnson (J&J) has agreed to pay $700m to settle a multistate investigation alleging its talc-based products cause cancer.

The multistate action was led by Attorney General Ashley Moody, representing 42 other attorneys general.

The settlement will resolve the charges that J&J falsely promoted the safety and purity of its previous talc powder products, misleading consumers into believing the products were safe.

Last year, J&J agreed to stop the manufacture and sale of talc-based baby powder and body powder products in the US, switching to corn starch as the main ingredient.

According to Reuters’ report, J&J did not admit wrongdoing in settling with the states and said its talc products are safe and do not cause cancer.

Attorney General Ashley Moody said: “We are leading a multistate action against Johnson & Johnson’s deceptive marketing of products that contained talc, securing $700m nationwide.

“This is a major advancement for consumer product safety, as Johnson & Johnson has stopped the manufacturing and marketing of products containing talc powder, which may be linked to serious health issues, including cancer.”

As part of the consent judgment secured by the multistate coalition, Florida will receive more than $48m, and the judgment is pending judicial approval.

J&J will not resume manufacturing, marketing, promotion, sale and distribution of baby and body powder and cosmetic powder that contains talcum powder.

The company will permanently stop the manufacture, marketing, promotion, sale, or distribution of any such products in the US, directly or indirectly, through any third party.

J&J has previously attempted to resolve the claims by placing one of its subsidiaries, created to contain its talc liabilities, into bankruptcy, which was rejected by the courts.

Last month, the US drugmaker proposed a $6.48bn settlement to resolve most of the claims through a third bankruptcy filing and allocated an $11bn reserve to cover all talc liabilities.

J&J worldwide vice president of litigation Erik Haas, in a statement, said: “The company continues to pursue several paths to achieve a comprehensive and final resolution of the talc litigation.

“We will continue to address the claims of those who do not want to participate in our contemplated consensual bankruptcy resolution through litigation or settlement.”