PENSACOLA, Fla. — The Juul settlement announced Tuesday may be just the beginning of payouts over the company’s e-cigarettes.
The company agreed to pay nearly half a billion dollars, and change its marketing techniques.
A two-year bipartisan investigation found Juul deliberately targeted young people through marketing campaigns even though much of that demographic is not legally old enough to buy e-cigarettes.
That follows a two-year investigation involving 33 states’ attorney generals.
One Pensacola attorney says many personal injury lawsuits against JUUL are still going forward.
“So you have kind of the government cases and the individual cases,” Sam Geisler; Aylstock, Witkin, Kreis & Overholtz attorney said. “They’re kind of neck-and-neck as I understand, and they’re being worked up and litigated. They have a process where there’s kind of test trials, where they’re actual trials, but they’re hand-picked across the parties, including with the court, in order to be representative of what cases are out there and once you get a couple of verdicts, it kind of helps settlement, because you’re informing the parties about the relative merits and values of these cases. So, the first case as I understand it will be a school board case, then that should follow soon there after with individuals.”
Geisler says he hopes the FDA ruling will stand, and Juul’s products will remain off the market.
Channel 3 asked Geisler what parents should know about the company.
“You gotta stay away from them, and I’m hoping at this point the word has gotten out that these are not safer than cigarettes,” Geisler said. “These are not smoking cessation devices, not at all. The extend of the toxilogical injuries, and I guess you could say the extent to which it does harm to your lungs and your body is the extent of which isn’t really well known just yet either. So you know, be involved in your teen’s life, and do what you can try and find out if they’re using these. Hopefully, with them being pulled off the market, that’s going to make parents’ jobs a lot easier. So we’re hoping that the FDA ruling will ultimately stand, and that this product will remain off the market.”