Opioid Litigation Update
Tentative Settlement Reached
The largest manufacturer of opioids, Purdue Pharma, announced the company has tentatively agreed to a settlement totaling approximately $12 billion.
Details about the settlement and distribution of revenues remains under negotiation by state and local governments. The settlement, once finalized, would become the first comprehensive settlement against a drug manufacturer for its contributory role in the opioid epidemic. As part of the settlement agreement, Purdue Pharma filed for bankruptcy.
Illinois Attorney General Kwame Raoul filed a lawsuit against Purdue Pharma in April 2019.
Other legal fronts to hold drug manufacturers accountable remain pending.
Illinois Attorney General Files Lawsuit Against Opioid Manufacturers
On September 11, 2019, Illinois Attorney General Kwame Raoul announced that his office has filed a lawsuit against several other opioid manufacturers for their roles in the opioid epidemic. From a press release:
According to Raoul's lawsuit, filed in Cook County Circuit Court, the opioid manufacturers carried out unfair and deceptive marketing campaigns that prioritized profits over public health and resulted in unprecedented levels of opioid prescribing, while the distributors irresponsibly flooded Illinois with opioids, failing in their role as gatekeepers in preventing the diversion of opioids.
Raoul's lawsuit seeks to abate and remedy the statewide public nuisance caused by these companies. Raoul also asks the court to prohibit the manufacturers’ and distributors’ deceptive and unfair conduct in order to ensure it does not happen again in the future, and to hold the companies accountable for the devastation they have caused in Illinois and nationwide.