Johnson & Johnson said on Monday it had agreed to pay $99 million to settle opioid-related claims by the state of West Virginia and its sub-divisions, removing the company from an ongoing trial that began this month, Reuters reports. West Virginia is still pursuing claims against Teva Pharmaceuticals Industries Ltd and AbbVie Inc's Allergan in the Kanawha County Circuit Court trial for allegedly fueling the addiction crisis in the state. J&J said it did not admit liability or wrongdoing in the settlement.
J&J finalized a nationwide $5 billion opioid settlement in February, which largely resolved state and local government opioid lawsuits against the company. West Virginia was one of five states that did not join the $5 billion settlement. It would have received about $53 million if it had joined the agreement. West Virginia has been hit hard by the opioid crisis, which has caused 500,000 overdose deaths over the past two decades. In 2020, it had an overdose death rate of more than three times the national average.