- The owners of Purdue Pharma — including members of the Sackler family — have reached a tentative settlement agreement inthousands of lawsuits over what accusers say ismisleading marketing of OxyContin that’s been partly responsible for theUS opioid crisis, theNew York Times reported September 11.
- State attorneys general had previously asked the Sacklers to pay $4.5 billion, according toNPR.
- Purdue’s accusers claim the company’s misleading advertising helped ignite America’s opioid crisis,Business Insider previously reported.
- Sales of OxyContinhelped the family build a $13 billion fortune.
- Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.
TheSacklers— one of America’s most controversial families — have tentatively agreed to pay out of pocket to resolve thousands of lawsuits against the family business, OxyContin-maker Purdue Pharma, according toThe New York Times.
The tentative settlement requires the Sacklers to pay $3 billion of their own fortune in cash over the next seven years,The Times reported.
Purdue Pharma will likely file for bankruptcy and be split into separate companies, two people involved in the negotiations toldThe Times. A new company will continue to sell OxyContin, with all proceeds benefiting the plaintiffs.
“Purdue Pharma continues to work with all plaintiffs on reaching a comprehensive resolution to its opioid litigation that will deliver billions of dollars and vital opioid overdose rescue medicines to communities across the country impacted by the opioid crisis,” the company said in a statement emailed to Business Insider.
Read more:Non-profits, museums, and hedge funds: Here are the groups that have cut ties with the Sackler family over the opioid crisis
Purdue’s accusers claim the company’s misleading advertising helped ignite America’s opioid crisis,Business Insider previously reported. Sales of OxyContin helped the familybuild a $13 billion fortune.
In the process leading up to the Sacklers’ tentative $3 billion settlement, state attorneys general first asked the Sacklers to pay $4.5 billion, according toNPR. The family declined, and counter-offered a $3 billion payment, Purdue Pharma’s head of corporate affairs and communications, Josephine Martin, toldNPR September 9. The plaintiffs, however, “needed more security on the part of the Sacklers that the money they were pledging, they would in fact pay,” North Carolina state attorney general Josh Stein said on NPR’s “Morning Edition.”
“Purdue Pharma believes a settlement that benefits the American public now is a far better path than years of wasteful litigation and appeals,” Purdue Pharma said in a statement toThe New York Times in August. “Those negotiations continue and we remain dedicated to a resolution that genuinely advances the public interest.”
In addition to being 100% owners of Purdue Pharma, members of the Sackler family are also major philanthropists.As Business Insider’s Katie Warren previously reported, there is a Sackler Gallery at the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, DC; a Sackler Center at the Guggenheim in New York City; a Sackler Educational Lab at the American Museum of Natural History; and a Sackler Wing at the Metropolitan Museum of Modern Art. All of these institutions have come under fire due to their relationships with the Sacklers; several havepledged to stop accepting donations from the family.
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