In a landmark decision that could have far-reaching implications for the e-cigarette industry, Juul Labs has agreed to pay $7.9 million to the state of West Virginia to settle a lawsuit accusing the company of marketing its products to underage users.
West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey announced the settlement on Monday, stating that the lawsuit accused Juul Labs of engaging in unfair or deceptive practices in the design, manufacturing, marketing, and sale of e-cigarettes.
The company allegedly violated the state’s Consumer Credit and Protection Act in the process. The Attorney General specifically pointed out that Juul had "deceived consumers about its nicotine strength, misrepresented the nicotine equivalency of its products to traditional cigarettes, and understated the risks of addiction that occur with such powerful levels of nicotine."
A 2020 report released by West Virginia health officials found a disturbing increase in e-cigarette usage among high school students. More than 60% of high school students in the state reported trying e-cigarettes in 2019, a significant jump from 44% in 2017. This data underscores the urgency for more stringent regulations and oversight in the e-cigarette industry to protect our youth from the harmful effects of nicotine addiction.
The $7.9 million settlement serves as a clear message to other e-cigarette companies that targeting underage users will not be tolerated. Attorney General Morrisey emphasized this point in his statement, saying, "This settlement puts companies like Juul in check to not copy big tobacco’s playbook and gear marketing strategies toward underage people."
JUUL Labs, recently reached a $255 million settlement in a class-action lawsuit. The lawsuit claimed that Juul unlawfully marketed its products to minors under 18. The lawsuit also alleged that Juul consumers paid more for their vaping pens and refill pods than they should have because they didn't have accurate information about the products' level of addictiveness and safety.
To be eligible for a payout from the Juul Settlement, you must have purchased a Juul product either online, in-store or directly from Juul's online store in the United States before December 7, 2022
Juul Labs reportedly pays 1.2 Billion to settle 10,000 youth-vaping lawsuits!
As advocates for the health and well-being of our children, we at Moms Justice applaud the actions of West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey in holding Juul Labs accountable for their alleged marketing to underage users.
We hope this settlement serves as a wake-up call for e-cigarette companies and emphasizes the importance of ethical marketing practices that prioritize the health of our youth. While we recognize that there is still much work to be done in regulating the e-cigarette industry, this settlement is an important step forward in our fight against youth nicotine addiction.