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Legal Blog

Cates Mahoney Joins Suit Against Pharmaceutical Companies At Center of Opioid Epidemic

Published: Apr 21, 2017 in Mass Action, Press

Opioid abuse has ravaged communities throughout the United States, and St. Clair County, Illinois has not escaped the devastation. In an attempt to fight back against those who encouraged and are profiting from the epidemic, Attorney David Cates of Cates Mahoney, LLC has joined two other firms to file a lawsuit on behalf of St. Clair County and the State of Illinois against opioid drug manufacturer Purdue Pharma and distributor Abbott Labs.

Cates is serving as a special assistant to the state’s attorney as they join together to hold accountable two of the country’s largest pharmaceutical companies, which have put profits above people in making and distributing these dangerous prescription drugs without adequate instructions and warnings to medical professionals and patients about their addictive nature. The lawsuit, filed on Wednesday, April 19, details how the companies initiated a multi-million-dollar marketing campaign to reverse negative perceptions about the drugs.

The lawsuit states that these companies violated their legal duties by failing to provide “full and accurate instructions and warnings to guide prescribing doctors and other healthcare providers in making treatment decisions.” Instead, they spent millions on misleading marketing campaigns that falsely advertised the drugs. The false claims made by Purdue and Abbott about the drugs led medical providers to rationalize prescribing opioids for chronic pain, which resulted in the widespread abuse seen today in Illinois.

Purdue Pharma has already admitted to false and misleading marketing of OxyContin, a commonly abused opioid painkiller. The company paid the United States more than $600 million to settle civil and criminal charges.

State Attorney Brendan Kelly enlisted the special assistance of class action lawyer David Cates, Eric Holland, and Chris Cueto to seek damages and other remedies from the pharmaceutical companies at the center of the opioid epidemic. Specifically, the lawsuit asks for Purdue and Abbott to pay “three times any money acquired as a result of defendants’ fraud.” That amount could add up quickly, as the sale of opioids alone generated $8 billion in revenue in 2010 alone. The lawsuit seeks to address the unjust profits obtained by pharmaceutical companies while residents of St. Clair County suffered.

The Illinois personal injury lawyers at Cates Mahoney, LLC have extensive experience representing clients who have been the victims of dangerous prescription drugs. We know how harmful pharmaceuticals can be and how hard it is to fight back against companies with teams of lawyers on their side. Our firm has successfully recovered numerous settlements and verdicts in excess of $1 million.

For more information, contact David Cates at Cates Mahoney, LLC at (618) 767-6293.