What Pharmaceutical Companies Paid to Settle Claims Related to the Opioid Crisis in the United States


State Attorneys General on Wednesday unveiled a $ 26 billion deal with America’s three largest drug distributors and Johnson & Johnson to resolve thousands of lawsuits by state and local governments over corporate role in the crisis opioid pain relievers in the country.

The following is a list of large companies that are believed to have contributed to the crisis and to legal settlements or judgments involving these companies.

Drug distributors and drugstore chains have been accused of lax controls that have contributed to the diversion of addictive pain relievers into illegal channels. Drug makers have been accused of deceptively marketing their prescription pain relievers by downplaying the risk of addiction.

The companies have denied the allegations.


Cardinal Health Inc., AmerisourceBergen Corp. and McKesson Corp.

  • – Agreed in July to a $ 21 billion settlement with US state attorneys general and attorneys representing local governments to settle more than 3,000 lawsuits. The value of the settlement could change as governments refuse to join the deal and take their cases to court.
  • – Agreed in October 2019 to a combined $ 215 million settlement with Ohio counties of Cuyahoga and Summit on the eve of a lawsuit.


Purdue pharma

  • The company will seek bankruptcy court approval in August for a deal that Purdue says is worth $ 10 billion to settle state and local government claims. Members of the Sackler family who own Purdue have agreed to contribute about $ 4.3 billion to the plan.
  • – In November 2020, the company pleaded guilty to three counts of violating a federal anti-recoil law, fraud in the United States, and violating the food, drugs and cosmetics law. The plea deal included more than $ 8 billion in penalties and fines, most of which will go unpaid because the company is bankrupt.
  • -Former board members agreed in October 2020 to pay a civil fine of $ 225 for allegedly causing bogus claims for OxyContin to government health programs such as Medicare. They denied the allegations.
  • – Agreed in March 2019 with members of the Sackler family to pay the state of Oklahoma $ 270 million
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Johnson & johnson

  • – Agreed in July to pay $ 5 billion as part of a settlement alongside drug distributors with state attorneys general and local government lawyers. The settlement value could change depending on whether states and local governments opt out of the deal and sue the company.
  • – In August 2019, Oklahoma Judge Thad Balkman ordered the company to pay $ 572 million after holding the company responsible for misleadingly marketing its pain relievers. The judgment was then reduced to $ 465 million. J&J is attractive.
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Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd.

  • -Settled in October 2019 with the Ohio counties of Cuyahoga and Summit on the eve of a lawsuit, agreeing to pay $ 20 million in cash and contribute $ 25 million from Suboxone, a treatment of opioid dependence over three years.
  • – Agreed in June 2019 to pay Oklahoma $ 85 million on the eve of a trial.

Insys Therapeutics Inc.

  • -In June 2019, I agreed to pay $ 225 million and an operational unit pleaded guilty to fraud to settle investigations into their payment of bribes to trick doctors into prescribing addictive opioids. The settlement follows a conviction of founder John Kapoor on charges of racketeering conspiracy. Insys filed for bankruptcy.

Individ Plc

  • – Agreed in July 2020 to pay $ 600 million and plead guilty to a felony affiliate to resolve allegations that it had engaged in an illegal scheme to increase prescriptions for Suboxone, an addiction treatment opioids.

Endo International Plc and Allergan Plc

  • -The drugmakers agreed in August 2019 to pay Ohio counties of Cuyahoga and Summit $ 15 million ahead of a lawsuit.


  • – Said in October 2020, when he filed for bankruptcy, that he planned to pay $ 1.6 billion to settle claims from state and local attorneys general.
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Reckitt Benckiser

  • – Agreed in July 2019 to pay up to $ 1.4 billion to resolve claims by the U.S. government that its former pharmaceutical company Indivior, prior to its separation, carried out an illegal scheme to increase sales of a treatment against opioid addiction.


CVS Health Corp., Rite Aid Corp. and Walmart Inc.

  • – Agreed in July to pay a total of $ 26 million to settle claims by New York City counties of Suffolk and Nassau that they fueled an epidemic of opioid addiction.


McKinsey & Co.

The global consultancy is believed to have contributed to the crisis by helping drugmakers, including Sackler-owned maker of OxyContin Purdue Pharma, design marketing plans and increase sales of painkillers. The company did not admit any wrongdoing.

  • – Agreed in February and March to pay approximately $ 645 million to 50 states, the District of Columbia, and five territories.

(Reporting by Tom Hals in Wilmington, Delaware)

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