Opioid addiction has reached epidemic proportions in the United States, and Florida has been one of the states hit the hardest. Opioid pain relievers such as hydrocodone, and synthetic opioids like fentanyl have led to countless deaths and drug addiction. Even when taking these drugs as prescribed by a doctor, there is a high probability of addiction. A fact, that the manufacturers and wholesalers of these drugs failed to warn people about. Lawsuits are now being filed against companies that are involved in the manufacturing, selling and distributing of these drugs.
The federal judge handling the Purdue Pharma bankruptcy case has set a deadline of June 30, 2020 for anyone who has a claim against the pharmaceutical company. This includes governments, entities such as hospitals and, for the first time, individuals who have personal injury claims. For those who have been fighting to hold the pharmaceutical companies accountable for profiting off the nation’s opioid crisis, it is seen as a victory.
Purdue Pharma recently agreed to pay Oklahoma $270 million rather than go to trial on charges of misleading marketing practices and misrepresentation of the drug Oxycontin, according to company and state press releases. These types of lawsuits and court battles are only beginning. There are now 35 state lawsuits against Purdue Pharma, and a federal lawsuit in Cleveland involving more than 1,000 entities alleging the company withheld information about the addictive potential of Oxycontin from the public.
While government entities and hospitals may already be aware of the June 30, 2020 deadline, individuals and families who have been personally affected may not be aware of the same. It is unclear just how much money will be available for paying on these claims as settlement and restructuring for Purdue Pharma is still being negotiated. Purdue has reached an agreement with state and local governments for over $10 billion, which has yet to be finalized.
An estimated 400,000 deaths in the country since 2000 have been linked to prescription drug and opioid abuse. Purdue Pharma, the maker of OxyContin, has come under fire as one of the leading companies contributing to the national opioid crisis. On average, 91 people die from opioid overdoses each day, according to the Centers of Disease Control (CDC). The opioid epidemic has affected many families in Central Florida, and now there is an opportunity for them to seek relief for damages suffered.
For people interested in learning more about how to submit a claim in the Purdue Pharma bankruptcy case, you can visit the company’s claim site at Purdue Pharma L.P. Case No. 19-23649. You can also contact our office directly at (407) 843-7060 to speak with an opioid litigation lawyer to help you file a claim. Individuals who join these lawsuits as plaintiffs may recover damages, including but not limited to:
- Medical bills
- Lost wages
- Drug treatment costs
- Pain and suffering
- Funeral expenses and burial costs.