Juul Agrees To Pay $40m Lawsuit settlement Over Teen Targeting Claims With A US State

Charges in a lawsuit that alleged that the e-cigarettes manufactured by the Juul were marketed targeting young people will be settled by the company with a US state.

A settlement fee of $40m payable over a period of six years will be made by Jull to North however iarolina while also bringing in changes to its advertising in the region.

In the settlement, there was no admission of any wrongdoing by the vape pen manufacturer.

“This settlement is consistent with our ongoing effort to reset our company. We continue to combat underage usage and advance the opportunity for harm reduction for adult smokers,” said a Juul spokesman.

While pointing out that distributing its non-menthol, non-tobacco, flavoured products had been stopped by it, Juul also said that it had paused all “mass-market” product advertising since the last couple of years. Other efforts of the company in addressing the issue included shutting down Instagram and Facebook pages that promoted its vape products, the company said.

This is the first time that the company has made any settlement in the case with a US state government and this settlement was announced by North Carolina Attorney General Josh Stein.

“North Carolina is now the first state in the nation to hold Juul accountable for its instrumental role in creating a youth vaping epidemic. They did it to teenagers across North Carolina and this country simply to make money,” said Attorney General Stein at a press conference.

According to the settlement terms and conditions, Juul will no longer use its advertisements to target underage people or make use of any one ion its advertisements under the age of 35 years in the state.

A cap will also be placed on the number of Juul vaping devices and pods that can be available for consumers in North Carolina for pirchasiong monthly or annually, according to the settlement agreement.

The lawsuit filed by North Carolina had been scheduled to go trial in July and it was also the first US state to file a case in 2019 against the e-cigarette giant.

In its law suit the state had accused Juul of delivering the highly-addictive substance of nicotine to young people while also selling them the product online through its small devices and sweet flavours, which previously included mango or cucumber.

According to the state’s Youth Tobacco Survey, there was a 78 per cent jump in the consu8mption of e-cigarettes amongst North Carolina high school students between 2018 and 2019.

Research and programmes designed to stop young people from taking up vaping will be funded with the settlement money.

With respect to development of industry-wide marketing practices, Juul would be industry-wide marketing practices, the company said. It also supported the decision of the state to make use of the settlement money for taking steps to reduce underage use.

Cases filed in the US against the company by state officials, school districts and even young people are still pending and some are ongoing.

(Adapted from TheGuardian.com)

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