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Counties, cities, and school districts across the nation have filed suits against JUUL as widespread vaping has placed severe financial burdens on these public entities while they try to halt the youth vaping epidemic in their communities.
July 22, 2020, 12:26 PM EDT — SAN DIEGO — The National JUUL Litigation team has filed a lawsuit on behalf of Monterey County against JUUL Labs Inc. for its role in creating an e-cigarette epidemic and resurgence in youth nicotine addiction in the County.
The lawsuit seeks injunctive relief and abatement remedy to combat the e-cigarette epidemic, which has severely impacted Monterey County by interfering with normal County operations. The County is also seeking compensatory damages to provide relief from its financial losses as a result of the epidemic, including the extensive costs of health initiatives, the costs associated with law enforcement and public safety, costs associated with new legislation, and several other costs associated with combating the e-cigarette crisis.
“Monterey County is joining many other counties, cities and school districts in the fight against JUUL,” said Baron & Budd Shareholder, John Fiske. “The youth vaping epidemic is affecting our nation’s youth and public entities all over the country are doing their best to stop the spread of this health crisis. It’s time for JUUL to step up and do what’s right.”
Since entering the market in 2015, JUUL has dominated the e-cigarette industry and has controlled over 70% of the market. Over a million JUUL e-cigarettes were sold between 2015 and 2017. In fact, the e-cigarette category grew 97 percent to $1.96 billion between June 2017 and June 2018 alone. That growth is largely based on JUUL’s market strategy, which is to target school-age children, the lawsuit alleges.
“An entirely new generation of youth has become addicted to nicotine, a consequence of JUUL’s targeted and deceptive marketing whose reach extends beyond our schoolyards and into our communities,” said Panish Shea & Boyle LLP partner Rahul Ravipudi. “We are proud to stand beside Monterey County as it champions for the safety and wellness of its youngest residents and remain diligent in our mission to hold JUUL accountable for its actions.”
The National Institute on Drug Abuse found that the 2018 spike in nicotine vaping was the largest for any substance recorded in 44 years and the number of youth e-cigarette users increased by 1.5 million between 2017 and 2018. The lawsuit alleges JUUL’s aggressive, strategic marketing and product designs not only create an addiction crisis among youth consumers, but also a broader health crisis.
The National JUUL Litigation consortium is comprised of the firms of Baron & Budd, P.C.; Beasley, Allen, Crow, Methvin, Portis and Miles, PC; Goza & Honnold, LLC; Panish Shea & Boyle LLP; Wagstaff & Cartmell, LLP; and Walkup, Melodia, Kelly & Schoenberger. These are some of the largest and most accomplished plaintiffs’ law firms in the country. With decades of experience, the National JUUL Litigation team has the expertise and resources to handle complex litigation throughout the country. The firms’ attorneys have obtained significant awards for their clients and have been recognized for their continued excellence. The legal team was formed to work jointly on behalf of public entities in the investigation and prosecution of claims for damages arising out of the public nuisance, negligence and other claims against e-cigarette companies, such as JUUL Labs, Inc. The National JUUL Litigation attorneys are leaders in representing public entities in this type of litigation. Members of our consortium currently serve in leadership roles, including Public Entity Plaintiffs’ Co-Lead Counsel representing school districts throughout California. All the firms on the legal team have built their reputations on their ability to litigate complex disputes. The National JUUL Litigation team is committed to representing public entities, large or small, and ensuring they are justly compensated for the cost imposed on them by irresponsible companies. For more information, visit www.schoolvapingcrisis.com.