Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios
Purdue Pharma is very close to a settlement with states, cities, counties and Native American tribes over its role in fueling the opioid epidemic — but part of the settlement puts those governments in an awkward position.
Driving the news: A major part of the proposed settlement would involve Purdue declaring bankruptcy and the Sackler family members conceding ownership.
- Purdue would then become a "public benefit trust corporation, with proceeds going toward the governments bringing the lawsuits," the Wall Street Journal previously reported.
The intrigue: The same governments that have alleged Purdue's OxyContin has wreaked havoc on their communities would pocket all future OxyContin profits.
- If OxyContin sales fall, that would result in less money going to state and local governments.
The bottom line: Purdue has threatened to enter bankruptcy regardless of whether this settlement offer is accepted, so some plaintiffs may feel pressured to take what they can get — even if it means they become the beneficiaries of painkiller sales they view to be tainted.