Daily Management Review

J&J Agrees To Settle Opioid Charges With New York For $263 Mln


J&J Agrees To Settle Opioid Charges With New York For $263 Mln
Charges that Johnson & Johnson had fuelled an opioid epidemic in New York state and in two of its largest counties would be settled by the company for an amount of $263, the company said on Saturday.
With this out of court settlement, the company will be able to remove itself from a jury trial that is scheduled to begin on Tuesday on Long. A number of other big opioid makers and their distributors are also defendants in the case.
In its settlement with New York state, and with Nassau and Suffolk counties, no admission of liability or any wrongdoing was accepted by Johnson & Johnson. As a part of the $229.9 million settlement with the New York state, J&J has also pledged to stop sale of the painkillers throughout the United States.
“The opioid epidemic has wreaked havoc" across the nation, New York Attorney General Letitia James said in a statement. "Johnson & Johnson helped fuel this fire." Her focus remains "getting funds into communities devastated by opioids as quickly as possible," she said.
The current amount of settlements were in line with the prior agreement by the company of paying $5 billion for settlement of opioid claims by states, cities, counties and tribal governments throughout the US, the company said.
A proposal of paying a combined settlement amount of $26 billion to end thousands of opioid lawsuits has been made by the largest US drug distributors - AmerisourceBergen Corp, Cardinal Health Inc and McKesson Corp, along with the healthcare company, said reports.
An appeal against the ruling by Oklahoma judge passed in 2019 which ruled that J&J – based in New Brunswick, New Jersey, should pay $465 million for engaging in deceptive marketing of opioids was also being made by the company.
The trial for the opioid related trial scheduled for Tuesday is among a number of such trials that are scheduled to start this year even as other trials are currently underway in California and West Virginia.
Drugmakers AbbVie Inc and Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd and several distributors are among the defendants. Pharmacy chain Walgreens Boots Alliance Inc is also a defendant, though it was sued only by the counties.
During jury selection, Walmart Inc, Rite Aid Corp and CVS Health Corp were severed from the trial. CVS has settled the charges against it with Nassau and Suffolk counties but has not yet disclosed the settlement terms and amount.
Almost 500,000 people died from opioid overdoses from 1999 to 2019, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has said.