Attorney General Ford Announces Initial Receipt of Money from Multiple Opioid-Related Court Settlements

April 4, 2022

 Carson City, NV– Today, Nevada Attorney General Aaron D. Ford announced that this month Nevada will receive the first payments of over $284 million in opioid settlement funds agreed to by the state. The money will come from two settlements agreed to by the state: one with opioid manufacturer Johnson & Johnson and its U.S.-based Janssen Pharmaceutical Companies and another with opioid distributors AmerisourceBergen, Cardinal Health and McKesson.

 “It is not an exaggeration to say this is the most significant infusion of money into Nevada since the receipt of emergency COVID-19 funding,” said AG Ford. “This money will go directly toward remediating the harms done to Nevada by the ongoing opioid epidemic, and will give our state, our counties and our litigating cities access to the funding and tools they need to help the members of our Nevada family impacted by the horrors of addiction. Help is here, and I will continue to fight for even more aid to our state.”

The money from these settlements has begun to flow into the state during a time of great need. Nevada has been uniquely impacted by the opioid crisis. It has been, and continues to be, one of the hardest-hit states. Opioid-related deaths are spiking to levels even higher than they were during the height of the original epidemic. 

In 2021, AG Ford announced a $45 million settlement with the opioid consulting firm McKinsey and Company, Inc. McKinsey provided marketing plans and otherwise advised opioid manufacturers, including OxyContin maker Purdue Pharma, for over a decade. These marketing plans were used by the country’s largest opioid manufacturers to increase the sale and use of opioids in Nevada. 

Earlier in 2022, AG Ford announced that Nevada will participate in a $26 billion opioid settlement with the three largest opioid distributors — AmerisourceBergen, Cardinal Health and McKesson — which will result in Nevada receiving $231,679,409 over a period of 18 years under the settlement.

At that time, AG Ford also announced a settlement with Johnson & Johnson and its U.S.-based Janssen Pharmaceutical Companies, which will result in Nevada receiving $53,508,792, 95% of which is payable by the end of 2022.

With these settlements, the combined recoveries the Attorney General’s Office has recovered in the opioid litigation is almost $329 million.

While Nevada remains open to settling with other defendants, the Office of the Attorney general will continue to seek justice and hold those accountable who acted as a catalyst for this epidemic. The state’s litigation continues with a trial date set for April 17, 2023.

Earlier this year, the state; all Nevada counties; and cities that currently have active litigation against opioid companies came to an agreement on the intrastate allocation of funds from opioid-related recoveries. This One Nevada Agreement on
Allocation of Opioid Recoveries provides a framework for how funds from any Nevada opioid-related settlement will be allocated among the state and various local governmental entities and used to remediate the harms, impact and risks caused by the opioid epidemic in the state.

In early 2021, Gov. Sisolak signed Senate Bill 390 (S.B. 390) into law, creating the Fund for Resilient Nevada, which directs state opioid recoveries to fund evidence-based programs through the Nevada Department of Health and Human Services. S.B. 390 requires the state to create a State Needs Assessment which identifies the critical needs for attacking the impacts and effects of opioids throughout the entire state, and a State Plan for prioritizing funding for the needs identified in said assessment. S.B. 390 also creates a mechanism for the state, counties and cities to work together in developing county needs assessments and county plans that complement the State Needs Assessment and State Plan, therefore maximizing the use of the money from recoveries.