Opioid Ruling Too Broad: West Virginia Supreme Court

The West Virginia Supreme Court said Monday a lower court’s order prohibiting insurers from pursuing litigation against an opioid pharmaceutical distributor in other states was overly broad.

In 2012, West Virginia’s attorney general filed a lawsuit against Conshohocken, Pennsylvania-based AmerisourceBergen Drug Corp., a wholesale distributor of prescription opioid medication in West Virginia, seeking to hold it liable for the prescription opioid epidemic in the state, according to the ruling in St. Paul Fire and Marine Insurance Co. v. AmerisourceBergen Drug Corp. et. al.

After that litigation was settled, numerous other plaintiffs named ABDC as defendants in as many as 165 similar lawsuits in West Virginia courts, according to the ruling.

The case before the state Supreme Court derived from ABDC’s efforts to establish it has coverage under primary, umbrella and excess commercial general liability policies it had purchased, the ruling said.

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