Attorney General Hector Balderas
From the Office of the Attorney General:
ALBUQUERQUE — Attorney General Hector Balderas Tuesday announced that New Mexico will join in an $18.5 billion nationwide settlement with the three largest distributors of opioid medications in the United States.
The three distributors who will pay into the settlement over the next 18 years are McKesson, AmerisourceBergen and Cardinal Health.
In 2017 Attorney General Balderas filed his lawsuit against the three companies, as well as against the manufacturers that make opioids and the retail pharmacies that sell them.
Several manufacturers, including Purdue Pharma, have filed for bankruptcy as a result of a nationwide wave of litigation. New Mexico’s lawsuit is scheduled for trial against the remaining companies in September 2022.
“The harm these companies caused by pouring millions of pills into our state while turning a blind eye is nearly incalculable, these funds allow us to move forward and start to rebuild our communities decimated by this crisis,” Attorney General Balderas said. “The current appropriating process is too old and antiquated. I’m asking state leaders and local governments to come up with an equitable split; we need to immediately get dollars into the hands of those on the front lines battling this crisis.”
The amount of money allocated to New Mexico via the settlement largely depends on participation in the settlement by New Mexico cities and counties as well as by state government. The more local governments that participate, the more money will ultimately be paid to New Mexico by the three distributors.
City and County officials with questions about their eligibility for this settlement or the sign-on process should contact the Attorney General’s Office. Further details about the nationwide settlement can be found online at www.nationalopioidsettlement.com.