Our Pennsylvania opioid labor union litigation lawyers offer representation to labor unions that have suffered economic and other damages due to the opioid crisis. The national opioid epidemic—which resulted from prescription opioid manufacturers’ unlawful marketing tactics—has burdened labor unions and other third-party payors with unprecedented costs.
A report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) revealed U.S. costs due to opioid abuse and addiction amounting to more than $78.5 billion in 2013, alone. The CDC broke these costs down as follows:
- lost productivity ($42 billion)
- increased health insurance costs ($26.1 billion)
- increased criminal justice costs ($7.6 billion)
- increased substance abuse treatment costs ($2.8 billion)
Pennsylvania labor unions may be entitled to significant damages from prescription opioid manufacturers for lost productivity and other costs resulting from the opioid epidemic.
Studies have linked decreased labor participation and resultant costs to proliferation of prescription opioid use:
- A study published in 2016 found a steady decline in labor force participation since the year 2000, particularly among men between the ages of 25 and 54.
- Research by a Princeton University economist indicated that as much as one-fifth of labor force participation reduction is due to the effects of the opioid crisis.
- CNA Financial Corp. reports that opioid prescription purchases are between 5 and 10 percent greater in the construction industry than in other industries.
Causes of Opioid Related Labor Union Costs
Illicit marketing practices by prescription opioid manufacturers led to:
- the development of a deadly national opioid crisis fueled by rapidly increasing opioid addiction and abuse
- costly and damaging consequences for Pennsylvania (and other) labor unions
Legal actions brought by Pennsylvania opioid labor union litigation lawyers may allege that prescription opioid manufacturers:
- engaged in illicit and aggressive marketing tactics encouraging excessive use of prescription opioids
- knowingly and intentionally understated the significant risk of prescription opioid addiction from prolonged opioid use
- knowingly and intentionally understated the challenges associated with prescription opioid withdrawal
- knowingly and intentionally understated the challenges associated with prescription opioid addiction prevention and management
- knowingly and intentionally understated the greater risk of addiction associated with increased opioid dosages
- knowingly and intentionally overstated the benefits of prescription opioids
- knowingly and intentionally understated the benefits and effectiveness of alternative pain management treatments
- otherwise understated the significant dangers of prescription opioid use
- continued these marketing practices with knowledge of proliferating opioid addictions
Recoverable Costs in Opioid Labor Union Litigation
Damages that may be recoverable by labor unions in opioid labor union litigation may include, but are not limited to, costs related to:
- loss of members’ lives due to opioid addiction and overdoses
- increased healthcare insurance costs due to illnesses and injuries resulting from opioid use and addiction
- increased human services costs related to opioid abuse and addiction
- increased costs related to negotiating with healthcare insurers to limit coverage for prescription opioids after certain periods of use
- decreased labor force participation and related costs resulting from members’ opioid dependency
- costs related to opioid-addicted members’ illnesses and injuries resulting from opioid dependency
- opioid addiction and its effects resulting from members’ prolonged use of easily accessible opioids to enable post-injury or illness return to work
- opioid abuse and addiction education and counseling
- opioid drug screening
- costs of injuries and accidents caused by working under the influence of prescription or other opioids
Opioid Multidistrict Litigation (MDL)
The Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation (JPML) formed an Opioid MDL in the Northern District of Ohio on December 5, 2017, to handle the discovery and pre-trial phases of federal opioid government, labor union, and other non-individual opioid litigation. Already instituted federal labor union cases will be automatically transferred to the MDL court for this phase of the litigation. Labor unions that institute new federal opioid litigation must file directly with the MDL court.
Contact our Pennsylvania Opioid Labor Union Litigation Lawyers
Labor unions may be entitled to recover money damages from prescription opioid manufacturers for increased costs resulting from members’ opioid dependence. Feldman & Pinto, P.C., is a Philadelphia based personal injury firm concentrating their practice in pharmaceutical litigation and medical malpractice. We are part of a team of lawyers engaged in a fight to compensate labor unions for costs incurred as a result of the opioid epidemic.
Please contact our Pennsylvania opioid labor union litigation lawyers to discuss instituting opioid labor union litigation.