Federal Magistrate Allows Opioid Cases to Proceed
Thousands of people across the country, as well as their families, have had to deal with the devastating effects of opioid addiction. In response, several cities, counties and states have filed lawsuits against opioid manufacturers and distributors in order to recoup expenses they’ve incurred dealing with this massive problem. Thanks to a recent ruling from an Ohio federal magistrate, those lawsuits will be allowed to proceed.
What the Ruling Means
The magistrate’s ruling increases the chances that drug manufacturers and distributors will be held accountable for the harm that they caused in these communities. More than 1,000 such suits have been filed, with governmental entities seeking damages in the billions of dollars.
While the ruling pertains to what is being referred to as a “test case involving plaintiffs in Ohio, the implications will likely impact cases nationwide.
Many governmental entities filing lawsuits claim drug manufacturers not only failed to properly spell out the risks of prescription opioids, but also overstated the benefits of these drugs. In addition, the plaintiffs claim that the drug makers and distributors allowed suspiciously large shipments of opioids which led to diversion for illicit purposes.
The ruling by the Magistrate is a first step in the litigation to bring accountability to the terrible public health crisis facing our country due to the Opioid plague. The “test case’ is set for trial in September, 2019. It will be interesting to watch these developments over the course of the next year.