OxyContin maker Purdue Pharma has offered $10 billion to $12 billion to settle thousands of lawsuits related to its alleged role in the U.S. opioid crisis.
The proposal emerged from mediation hearings between lawyers for the Sackler family-owned pharmaceutical firm and at least 10 state attorneys general and plaintiffs’ attorneys, NBC News reported, citing sources familiar with the matter. Purdue Pharma board member David Sackler appeared at the Aug. 20 meeting in Cleveland on behalf of the Sackler family.
“While Purdue Pharma is prepared to defend itself vigorously in the opioid litigation, the company has made clear that it sees little good coming from years of wasteful litigation and appeals,” Purdue Pharma said in a statement addressing the report. “The people and communities affected by the opioid crisis need help now. Purdue believes a constructive global resolution is the best path forward, and the company is actively working with the state attorneys general and other plaintiffs to achieve this outcome.”
The drugmaker did not confirm or comment on the proposed settlement terms.
Purdue Pharma faces more than 2,000 lawsuits alleging the firm used deceptive sales practices to push the potent painkiller to the public. Plaintiffs argue the tactics contributed to the ongoing U.S. opioid crisis and factored into hundreds of thousands of deaths over the last decades.
Reports on Purdue Pharma’s proposal arose as U.S. drugmakers face unprecedented legal pressure. An Oklahoma judge ordered Johnson & Johnson on Monday to pay more than $572 million to settle lawsuits over its alleged role in the opioid crisis. Purdue Pharma previously agreed to pay $270 million to settle suits in the state.