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Purdue Pharma settlement to net $65m for Wisconsin

July 8, 2021 GMT

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — Wisconsin is in line to receive $65 million as part of a $4.3 billion multistate settlement with OxyContin maker Purdue Pharma over its role in the opioid crisis, Attorney General Josh Kaul announced Thursday.

Wisconsin is among 45 states that took action alleging the company downplayed Oxycontin risks. Purdue sought bankruptcy protection in 2019 as a way to settle the lawsuits. The settlement agreement was disclosed late Wednesday night in a filing in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in White Plains, New York.

The deal also calls for Purdue to turn over millions of documents and hundreds of thousands of confidential communications with its attorneys about tactics for selling opioids and for the company to be sold by 2025.

Kaul said the $65 million for Wisconsin would be used to fund opioid abatement efforts. The deal is still subject to court approval.

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Republican lawmakers passed a law in 2018 that requires Kaul to obtain permission from the Legislature’s GOP-controlled budget committee before entering into any settlments. Kaul said in a news release he doesn’t believe he needs committee approval to join the Purude Pharma agreement because it’s part of a bankruptcy proceeding, not a civil action.