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State of Alabama Settles Litigation Involving Two Opioid Distributors for $220 Million

State of Alabama Settles Litigation Involving Two Opioid Distributors for $220 Million

Prince Glover Hayes, one of the lead law firms representing the State in its long-running opioid litigation, is pleased to announce a $220 million settlement has been obtained in Montgomery County Circuit Court against two opioid distributors, Cardinal Health and Cencora (formerly known as Amerisource Bergen).  The agreement reached with the distributors provides that the distributors pay $220 million in abatement funds over ten years rather than the maximum of $180 million over 18 years offered in the federal multidistrict litigation.  When Attorney General Steve Marshall announced the settlement on March 4, 2024, he said, “[t]oday reaffirmed our decision to decline participation in the national opioid settlement with Cardinal and Cencora, as that proposal failed to adequately acknowledge the unique harms faced by Alabamians.”  He went on to say, “[w]hile this settlement will not bring back those lost to this devastating epidemic, it presents a historic opportunity to ameliorate the harm that opioid abuse has caused in our communities and to finally move us out of this epidemic altogether.”

The distributors will also pay fees and costs for the State’s counsel, thus allowing the State to direct all settlement funds to opioid abatement. 

Since 2018, PGH has been one of the lead firms involved in this impactful litigation.    Prior to this settlement, the State had already reached settlements totaling over $500 million.  “Alabama and her citizens have been damaged immensely by the opioid epidemic,” said PGH partner and Deputy Attorney General Josh Hayes. “Our firm is honored to have played a key role in this important litigation and hopes that this result will bring the recovery and healing that our communities need.”

Along with Hayes, the State of Alabama was represented in this matter by Bob Prince, Attorney General Steve Marshall, Clay Crenshaw and Michael Dean of the Alabama AG’s Office, along with lawyers from Beasley Allen including Rhon Jones, Jeff Price, Matt Griffith, Elliott Bienenfeld, Gavin King, Elizabeth Weyerman and the late Rick Stratton.