City of Baltimore Joins Settlement in Walmart Opioid Suits

Crest of the City of Baltimore

Brandon M. Scott
Mayor,
Baltimore City
250 City Hall - Baltimore Maryland 21202
(410) 396-3835 - Fax: (410) 576-9425

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

 

BALTIMORE, MD (Thursday, February 29, 2024) – Today, Mayor Brandon M. Scott announced that the City of Baltimore has signed onto a statewide settlement with Walmart to resolve claims regarding its role in the opioid crisis. The City's portion of the settlement is estimated to be just over $7.2 million. The City declined to sign onto the remaining global settlements in which Maryland agreed to participate.

"The opioid epidemic, which was directly brought on by corporate greed and irresponsibility, has been disastrous for our great city and has plagued communities across the country,” said Mayor Brandon M. Scott. “Walmart has reached this settlement in an effort to rectify the damage it has done, and with these funds, our City will be able to invest more in addressing the ongoing problem of opioids here in Baltimore. While this money will not restore the lives and families destroyed by addiction, it is an important step in accountability, and my administration will always continue our efforts to hold corporate bad actors responsible when they harm Baltimore."

The City filed suit in 2018 against a number of manufacturers and distributors for their respective roles in perpetuating the opioids crisis in Baltimore City. Baltimore is widely recognized as one of the cities most severely impacted by the opioids epidemic, which has had a devastating effect on its people and services.

Baltimore had previously refused to sign on to other state settlements offered by defendants in the case. The settlement against the biggest four offenders only would have netted the City less than $3 million a year, paid out over almost two decades. 

"We chose to go this route, because the settlement offered by Walmart is commensurate with its small market share here, as well as the fact that it hasn't operated in the City since 2016” said City Solicitor Ebony M. Thompson. “So far, we have declined the global settlements so that we can continue to pursue our cases. Those particular settlements offered by the defendants would have paid mere pennies on the dollar for their actions. Instead, we will continue to fight to ensure that the other opioid companies pay their fair share for inflicting this devastation on Baltimore."

The City's case against the opioid defendants is set for trial in the Circuit Court for Baltimore City in September 2024.

In addition to the settlement with Walmart, in November of last year, Baltimore received an additional $538,977.62 from the Mallinckrodt bankruptcy settlement, bringing the total recovery from that company to just over $1.01 million.

The City was represented by Sara Gross and Thomas P.G. Webb of the Baltimore City Department of Law.

Related Stories

Joint Statement from Mayor Brandon M. Scott and Baltimore State's Attorney Ivan J. Bates

Mayor Brandon M. Scott and Baltimore State's Attorney Ivan J. Bates released a joint statement.

 

Baltimore is Hiring- City of Baltimore to Host Citywide Hiring Event to Connect Job Seekers with Opportunities

Mayor Brandon M. Scott and the City of Baltimore highlighted the a citywide hiring event "Baltimore Is Hiring" aimed at connecting job seekers with a wide range of employment opportunities within local government, particularly historically hard-to-hire positions.

 

Mayor Scott Announces Recipients of ARPA-Funded $3.6 Million

Mayor Brandon M. Scott announced the recipients of the $3.6 million Diversity in Arts Grant.