On Tuesday, October 13, J&J announced that it was increasing its settlement deal by $1 billion for a total of $5 billion in its efforts to put an end to almost 3,000 opioid lawsuits. This is part of the original $48 billion settlement framework proposed in 2019 with four different states.
Although Johnson & Johnson’s decision to settle seems out of the ordinary given their litigation strategy, it comes at a time when the company is fighting to overturn an Oklahoma verdict for the only opioid case brought to trial, which resulted in a $465 million verdict.
Johnson & Johnson said the settlement “is not an admission of liability or wrongdoing, and the Company will continue to defend against any litigation that the final agreement does not resolve.”
“The settlement will provide certainty for involved parties and critical assistance for families and communities in need,” the company said.