The widespread litigation over OxyContin is a step closer to resolution. Fifteen more states reached an agreement with the manufacturer, Purdue Pharma, and its owner, the wealthy Sackler family.
The deal filed late Wednesday was struck after Sackler family members agreed to contribute another $50 million toward a proposed litigation settlement and release more internal documents for public inspection. Another $175 million would come from relinquishing control of family charitable institutions.
Sackler family members called the deal an "important step toward providing substantial resources for people and communities in need."
The company’s bankruptcy-exit plan aims to resolve some 3,000 lawsuits alleging that Purdue and its family owners contributed to an opioid crisis. The CDC says that crisis has claimed roughly half a million lives since 1999. The company and family members have denied the allegations.
All but a few states now support Purdue’s bankruptcy plan - which would dissolve the company and shift assets to trusts run on behalf of plaintiffs that alleged the company and its owners aggressively marketed the painkiller OxyContin while playing down its abuse and overdose risks.
The agreement sets the stage for the company to gain court approval in coming weeks for that plan.