Purdue Pharma is reportedly offering billions of dollars to settle the thousands of lawsuits related to its alleged role in the U.S. opioid crisis.
NBC News reported Tuesday that lawyers for Purdue and at least 10 state attorneys general and plaintiffs' attorneys discussed the potential settlement during a meeting last week. The OxyContin maker reportedly said it was willing to pay out $10 billion to $12 billion to settle the more than 2,000 suits against it.
That deal would reportedly involve the Sackler family-owned company filing for Chapter 11 protection and restructuring into a for-profit "public benefit trust." The trust's value would include more than $4 billion in drugs as well as any profits made from drug sales, and it would go to cities, counties and states. It would also see the Sacklers giving up ownership of the company and paying out at least $3 billion to the plaintiffs.
In a statement to NBC News, Purdue Pharma said that while it "is prepared to defend itself vigorously," it "sees little good coming from years of wasteful litigation and appeals." It also said it "believes a constructive global resolution is the best path forward" as "the people and communities affected by the opioid crisis need help now."
Purdue Pharma is just one of the opioid companies being sued over their alleged contribution to the opioid epidemic. According to the CDC, more than 200,000 people in the U.S. died from overdoses related to prescription opioids between 1999 and 2017.