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Supreme Court shreds nationwide $6 billion opioid settlement plan in ruling against Sackler family

The Supreme Court rejected a multi-billion dollarbankruptcy plan that protects the Sackler family – the former owners of the pharmaceutical giant Purdue Pharma which is responsible for marketing and selling the opioid OxyContin – from civil lawsuits.

The Sackler family reached a nationwide $6 billion settlement through Purdue Pharma’s bankruptcy for victims of the opioid crisis. That settlement, though, called for the Sacklers not to face future lawsuits.

In a 5-4 decision, justices said bankruptcy code does not permit a type of Chapter 11 reorganization plan that protects those who do not declare bankruptcy themselves.

“Once more, the Sacklers seek greater relief than a bankruptcy discharge normally affords, for they hope to extinguish even claims for wrongful death and fraud, and they seek to do so without putting anything close to all their assets on the table,” Justice Neil Gorsuch wrote in the majority opinion, joined by Justices Clarence Thomas, Samuel Alito, Amy Coney Barrett and Ketanji Brown Jackson.

Boy Scouts of America and the Catholic church used similar bankruptcy reorganization plans to protect individuals from civil lawsuits.

This means the Purdue Pharma bankruptcy plan, which initially had a $6 billion settlement for victims of OxyContin, will have to be sent back – something Justice Brett Kavanaugh pointed to in his dissent as an unfortunate result for victims waiting for compensation.

For years, victims of the drug have been unable to receive compensation due to a legal back-and-forth the Sacklers and Purdue Pharma were engaged with.

“Today’s decision is wrong on the law and devastating for more than 100,000 opioid victims and their families,” Justice Kavanaugh wrote, joined by Chief Justice John

Read more on independent.co.uk