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Consulting Giant McKinsey & Co. to Pay $78 Million Settlement in Groundbreaking Opioid Case

Consulting firm McKinsey & Co. has agreed to a $78 million settlement to resolve claims made by U.S. health insurers. The claims alleged that McKinsey’s consulting work with drug manufacturers, such as Purdue Pharma, played a part in fostering the opioid crisis across the country. Documents related to the landmark opioid settlement were filed in federal court in San Francisco and are pending judicial approval.

This groundbreaking settlement is part of a broader legal landscape that has seen more than $50 billion in settlements with stakeholders concerning their role in fueling the opioid crisis. Between 1999 and 2021, opioid addiction has claimed close to 645,000 American lives.

U.S. insurers allege that McKinsey contributed to the addiction epidemic by helping drug companies devise deceptive marketing practices that increased the sale of opioids. They argued that these strategies compelled them to cover prescription painkillers instead of non-addictive and more affordable options, resulting in additional expenses for opioid addiction treatment.

McKinsey has a longstanding reputation as an esteemed advisor to institutions, businesses, and governments worldwide. The company thrives on its image of providing ethical and strategic consulting services. However, a shadow will likely be cast on the firm’s reputation after this landmark settlement and the company’s entanglement in other lawsuits and settlements.

McKinsey had previously reached settlements totaling $641.5 million with state attorney generals and $230 million with local governments, in addition to resolving cases brought by Native American tribes. This $78 million settlement addresses claims from third-party payers, such as insurers providing health and welfare benefits. It marks the conclusion of a series of legal actions against McKinsey relating to its involvement with the opioid addiction epidemic. Under the terms of the agreement, the firm will establish a fund to reimburse any private benefit plans, its insurers, and other parties for their prescription painkiller costs.

McKinsey has not admitted wrongdoing and maintains that its past work was lawful and ethical. Clients may now doubt that, considering the scale and scope of the settlements and the consequences of their questionable business practices and ethical standards.

If you or a loved one has been impacted by opioid addiction, Shein Law can help. We refer opioid cases to reliable firms. Call 877-743-4652 or contact us online for more information. Located in Philadelphia and Pennsauken, New Jersey, we serve clients in Pennsylvania and New Jersey.

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