Girard Sharp and co-lead counsel today announced a comprehensive and historic $235 million settlement with Altria in the nationwide JUUL e-cigarette vaping predatory advertising, fraud, addiction and injury litigation, ending a bellwether trial in San Francisco. The settlement will resolve all remaining personal injury, consumer class action, and government entity cases brought in the national MDL and the JCCP in California against Altria (the earlier phase of the vast litigation ended in late 2022 when JUUL reached four coordinated settlements with all plaintiff parties).
“This settlement represents a positive step forward in addressing the harmful impacts of vaping on the public,” said Girard Sharp partner Dena Sharp, Co-Lead Counsel for Plaintiffs in the litigation. “The settlement will compensate JUUL purchasers, young people, parents, and governmental organizations across America, and avoids the delay and uncertainty of continued court proceedings. We are proud of our clients and the federal court system that made this result possible. The legal system worked in this case, and we thank the jurors who devoted their time to this trial over the past few weeks.”
Together with the earlier settlements with JUUL in the federal multidistrict litigation captioned In re: Juul Labs, Inc., Marketing, Sales Practices and Products Liability Litigation, MDL No. 2913, and the coordinated proceeding captioned Juul Labs Product Cases, JCCP No. 5052, the settlements with Altria (formerly Philip Morris) announced today will directly address youth use of e-cigarettes nationwide and compensate JUUL purchasers.
The Altria settlement follows nearly four years of hard-fought litigation in both state and federal court. Co-Lead Counsel believe that resolving the litigation against Altria through settlement is categorically in the best interests of all plaintiffs. The settlement builds on the plaintiffs’ earlier successful efforts to hold JUUL itself accountable, and will provide monetary relief as well as continuing mandatory changes to Juul/Altria’s marketing and other practices, including prohibitions on youth marketing and the sale of flavors not authorized by the FDA.
The Altria settlement brings a final resolution to the personal injury, consumer class action, and government entity cases brought in the MDL and the JCCP on behalf of children, families, and JUUL purchasers everywhere in the United States.
The Court will hold a hearing in the near future to review the proposed class settlement. If the settlement receives preliminary approval, a Class Settlement Administrator will be appointed to handle the process of making funds available to class members (including those who already filed claims as part of the JUUL settlement). At that time, the Class Settlement Administrator will notify class members about their rights and options under the Settlement. Concurrently, a claims process will begin for the Personal Injury and Government Entity settlements.