February 19, 2020

Negotiation Class Subverts Authority, States Say

A group of 12 states and the District of Columbia urged the Sixth Circuit to stop the use of the “negotiation class” in the multidistrict opioid litigation in Ohio, Law360 reports.

In a brief, the states say the idea subverts their authority to negotiate a settlement with the defendant companies and could allow cities and counties to take settlement money that belongs to the state. By allowing municipalities to negotiate instead of the state, “the district court has created an alternative to state government; it has freed the subdivisions from state control and thus invaded state sovereignty.”

The coalition of states say the negotiation class is a “significantly inferior way of resolving this dispute.”

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