SCOTUS Rejects Liability Shield at Center of Purdue Pharma Settlement

Source: New York Times

“The Supreme Court on Thursday rejected a provision at the heart of a multibillion-dollar settlement with Purdue Pharma that would have channeled billions of dollars to help curb the opioid epidemic in exchange for shielding members of the wealthy Sackler family from related lawsuits. In a 5-to-4 decision, written by Justice Neil M. Gorsuch, a majority of the justices held that the federal bankruptcy code does not authorize a liability shield for third parties in bankruptcy agreements. Justice Gorsuch was joined by Justices Clarence Thomas, Samuel A. Alito Jr., Amy Coney Barrett and Ketanji Brown Jackson. In a strongly worded dissent, Justice Brett M. Kavanaugh wrote that the ‘decision is wrong on the law and devastating for more than 100,000 opioid victims and their families.’ He was joined by Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. and Justices Sonia Sotomayor and Elena Kagan.” (06/27/24)