There is an ongoing 3M earplug lawsuit, or rather several 3M lawsuits, that continue to make their way through the court system. The latest update as of August 29th is that the company has agreed to settle. All this comes after the company provided standard-issue earplugs to the American Armed Forces that have allegedly left many service members facing hearing loss and tinnitus. Worst of all, it’s believed that this came after the defective earplugs were provided by the company out of Saint Paul, MN, with 3M being fully aware that there were issues with their product all along.
August 29th 3M Lawsuit Settlement
In a surprising 3M earplug lawsuit update that unfolded on August 29, 2023, the company has agreed to a settlement. This would see 3M paying $6.01 billion to those who suffered hearing loss while wearing their earplugs, specifically Veterans and service members.
3M wanted to file in bankruptcy court, but that avenue was a dead end. Now the company is facing more liability. The $6.01 billion settlement could prove advantageous for the conglomerate, as financial experts are expecting the total payout to be $10 billion.
Technically 3M doesn’t have to pay the settlement if under 98% of those who are eligible to make a claim don’t get involved. However, of the estimated 240,000 affected parties, the legal team of the plaintiffs is confident that participation won’t be a problem.
Remember, this legal issue is far from new. The fight has been going on for a decade. This has left many Veterans and active service members frustrated.
The payout includes $1 billion worth of 3M stock. This will be paid out beginning as early as 2023 and goes into 2029. News of the settlement was well-received by investors who believed analysts when they projected a much more expensive outcome.
Wall Street may be satisfied, but whether the figure is enough to satisfy those affected remains to be seen. Regardless of a payout, the devastating effects on the health of those who defend our country continues to impact their lives.
The 3M earplug lawsuit may be coming to a close, but it’s an important reminder of what those defending our nation experience to receive proper compensation. Were you affected by 3M products? Be sure to check back for more updates.
Is the 3M Earplug Lawsuit Worth It?
Whether or not the 3M earplug lawsuit is worth it is up to you. Everyone has their own personal opinion, lives, and needs. Your best bet, because we are not lawyers and this is not legal advice, is to speak with your legal counsel to determine the best course of action. You may be entitled to compensation based on factors that only your legal representation can uncover.
What is the Current Status of the 3M Earplug Lawsuit?
Before the settlement, Mike Roman, the Chairman and CEO of 3M, personally attended mediation sessions as ordered by a federal judge. These sessions took place on May 25 and May 26, 2023 in Pensacola.
An example of mass torts, 3M continues to face lawsuits that range over 200,000 in the U.S. District Court in northern Florida. This is a result of allegedly knowingly providing the U.S. military with faulty earplugs.
But this is simply part of the process. The 3M earplug lawsuit update that comes following the sessions in Florida and the new settlement agreement is part of a much larger legal battle the company is facing. This comes after being a supplier for the U.S. military and as a result, has spread across thousands of suits.
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How We Got Here
3M earplug lawsuits have been ongoing as tens of thousands of military members, both actively serving and Veterans, have filed claims against the conglomerate. These lawsuits allege that the company’s defective earplugs, previously issued as standard military gear, caused hearing damage. Judge Rodgers oversaw this multi-district litigation (MDL) case.
While the military plaintiffs won 10 out of 16 bellwether trials in Florida, resulting in jury awards of nearly $300 million, a global settlement has not been reached. In an effort to reach a resolution, formal mediation between 3M and the plaintiffs’ attorneys was mandated by Judge Rodgers. This ultimately ended without success.
The plaintiffs’ attorneys requested the resumption of mediation. 3M disagreed stating that further mediation in the current court wasn’t necessary. Despite this, 3M was committed to ongoing mediation in U.S. Bankruptcy Court.
Last summer, 3M put Aearo Technologies into bankruptcy, freezing litigation against the subsidiary. 3M sought to extend the freeze to itself but was denied. They have appealed the ruling. Aearo Technologies’ bankruptcy strategy aims to minimize potential damages related to earplugs, which are already reaching well over $100 billion in losses.
How Long Will the 3M Lawsuit Take?
Legal proceedings like the 3M earplug lawsuit can take years. It’s expected that this case will be no exception. Some people that have filed have already received compensation. Nonetheless, there are a lot of moving pieces. Those that were allegedly affected should continue to follow the case well into 2024 at the earliest. Now that a settlement has been reached, compensation may come sooner rather than later, if certain conditions are met.
How to File 3M Earplug Lawsuit
If you’re looking to file a 3M earplug lawsuit, you won’t have to look far. Several attorney offices are ready to serve your needs. Simply searching for legal representation in your area is the first step.
What is the Average Payout for the Lawsuit?
It’s a bit too early to say what the average payout will be for those affected, and there are always the 3M earplug lawsuit attorney fees that you’ll need to consider. But some estimates have payouts as low as a couple of thousand per person and others reach well over $200,000.
There are some estimates believing that each individual will receive tens of thousands of dollars. If you believe you have a case for a 3M earplug lawsuit, contact a trusted licensed attorney and explore your options.