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A 100B Dollars settlement? Or much less? Opioid payouts a mystery until J and J judge rules

July 23, 2019 / Kyle Blankenship

After Johnson and Johnson failed in its latest bid to toss out the opioid suit playing out in an Oklahoma courtroom, the possibility of a settlement continues to grow. For analysts watching the case as a bellwether for other opioid suits, the question is how big the payout could get. Short answer: Who knows? Monday, a judge threw out J&J’s final attempt to dismiss the illegal marketing lawsuit it faces in Oklahoma over sales of its opioid products in the state. J&J, which prosecutors described as the “kingpin” of the state’s opioid epidemic in their closing arguments last week, argued its portrayal by the state as a public nuisance was invalid and violated its First Amendment rights. The bench judge and state attorney Brad Beckworth weren’t having it. "No man or woman has ever laid down their life for this country so that a pharmaceutical company could come out and lie or hook kids on opioids,” Beckworth said.