New Hampshire reaches $40.5 million preliminary settlement with opioid manufacturer J&J
With the support of Motley Rice as outside counsel, New Hampshire Attorney General John Formella reached a $40.5 million preliminary settlement with Johnson & Johnson on Sept. 1, days before a jury trial was set to begin against the opioid manufacturer in the State’s Superior Court.
New Hampshire’s overdose death rate reached 26.9 per 100,000 in 2020, sadly placing it in the country’s top five states with the highest rates of opioid-involved deaths. The State’s lawsuit against J&J and its subsidiary Janssen Pharmaceuticals alleged the companies aggressively and deceptively marketed their opioids to prescribers and patients in New Hampshire. The State further alleged that the defendants’ marketing activities were a substantial factor in creating a public nuisance in New Hampshire that contributed to the opioid crisis, a crisis that continues to have devastating consequences to the lives, health and safety of the citizens of the State. The lawsuit sought abatement of the public nuisance allegedly caused by the defendants’ conduct and civil penalties for violations of the State’s Consumer Protection Act.
Motley Rice lawyers David Ackerman, Sarah Aguiñiga, Fred Baker, Jessica Colombo, Vin Greene, Bob McConnell, Mimi Liu, James Ledlie, Alexis Lilly, Katie Menard, Lance Oliver, Michael Pendell, Mike Rousseau and Cindi Solomon represented New Hampshire as outside trial counsel. Motley Rice also represents the State in litigation filed against several pharmacy chains that allegedly ignored dispensing red flags and flooded New Hampshire with more opioids than could be legitimately used.
“We are grateful to Attorney General Formella and Deputy Attorney General James Boffetti for the opportunity to work with the dedicated team of lawyers at the Attorney General’s Office,” said Motley Rice attorney, Michael Pendell. “We’re thrilled that the people of New Hampshire will receive much-needed resources to help address this crisis faster.”
Motley Rice’s opioid litigation leadership
Motley Rice represents dozens of governmental entities, including states, cities, towns, counties and townships in ongoing investigations and litigation filed in state courts and in the National Prescription Opiate Multidistrict Litigation. The entities allege deceptive marketing and/or the overdistribution of opioids. Motley Rice’s co-founding member Joe Rice is co-lead counsel for the federal MDL. Attorney Linda Singer also serves as co-chair of the MDL’s Manufacturer/Marketing Committee and Lou Bograd is co-chair of the Law & Briefing Committee.
As co-lead counsel for the MDL, Joe Rice co-led negotiations for a $26 billion settlement that was announced in July 2021 with Johnson & Johnson and the nation’s Big Three opioid distributors.
Learn more about the National Prescription Opiate MDL.
About Motley Rice
Motley Rice LLC is one of the nation’s largest plaintiffs’ litigation firms. With a tradition of representing those whose rights have been violated, Motley Rice attorneys gained recognition for their pioneering asbestos lawsuits, their work with the State Attorneys General in the landmark litigation against Big Tobacco, and their representation of 9/11 families in the ongoing lawsuit against terrorist financiers.
The firm continues to handle complex litigation in numerous areas, including securities fraud; antitrust; consumer protection; mesothelioma; environmental contamination; prescription and over-the-counter drugs; medical devices; human rights; aviation disasters; and wrongful death. Motley Rice is headquartered in Mt. Pleasant, S.C., and has additional offices in Connecticut; Washington, D.C.; New Jersey; New York; Pennsylvania; Rhode Island; and West Virginia. For more information, contact Motley Rice attorney Michael Pendell (CT, NY) at 1.800.768.4026 or visit www.motleyrice.com. Motley Rice LLC, a South Carolina Limited Liability Company, is engaged in the New Jersey practice of law through Motley Rice New Jersey LLC. Esther Berezofsky is the attorney responsible for New Jersey practice.