- Office of Attorney General Maura Healey
Media Contact for AG Healey Seeks Deadline Extension for Families Filing Claims Against Purdue Pharma in Light of COVID-19 Pandemic
BOSTON — Attorney General Maura Healey has asked the court overseeing the Purdue Pharma bankruptcy to extend the deadline for filing claims against the company, so that people do not lose their rights during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The brief, filed tonight in the Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York, was submitted by attorneys general from 25 states looking to extend the deadline to September 30. The brief supports recovery organizations including Learn to Cope and the Massachusetts Organization for Addiction Recovery (MOAR) that have asked the Court for extra time for families to navigate the claims process against Purdue for the harms caused by its drugs.
“People who have been harmed by Purdue Pharma deserve a full opportunity to file their claims and have their voices heard,” said AG Healey. “We know how important justice in this case is to families in Massachusetts and across the country. No one should lose their rights during a pandemic.”
In addition to the brief filed by the attorneys general, letters asking the Court to extend the deadline have been filed by:
- Harrison Cullen, Researcher and Member of Prescription Addiction Intervention Now;
- Joanne Peterson, Founder and Executive Director of Learn to Cope and witness at Purdue’s criminal sentencing in 2007;
- Dr. Stephen Gelfand, Founding Member of Physicians for Responsible Opioid Prescribing;
- Edward Bisch, witness at Purdue’s criminal sentencing in 2007;
- Barbara Van Rooyan, witness at Purdue’s criminal sentencing in 2007;
- Cynthia Munger, parent advocate;
- Dan Schneider, the pharmacist of the Netflix docuseries The Pharmacist;
- Ed Vanicky, witness at Purdue’s criminal sentencing in 2007; and
- Maryanne Frangules, Executive Director of MOAR
AG Healey’s Office has also partnered with Boston College Law School to create a referral line that matches Massachusetts residents with volunteers to help with filing claims.
On June 12, 2018, AG Healey filed the first lawsuit by any state against members of the Sackler family who own Purdue, alleging that they deceived doctors and the public to get more people on addictive opioids, at higher doses, for longer periods of time, causing thousands of Massachusetts residents to suffer, overdose, or die. The AG’s lawsuit revealed information from dozens of confidential Purdue documents showing how the Sacklers controlled Purdue and collected billions of dollars.
Following the AG’s lawsuit, dozens of other attorneys general sued the Sacklers, and Purdue filed for bankruptcy. As part of the bankruptcy, Purdue Pharma has given notice to file all claims by June 30, 2020.
The brief to extend the deadline was joined by California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, the District of Columbia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Iowa, Maine, Maryland, Minnesota, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, and Wisconsin.
Massachusetts residents looking for assistance in completing the claims form available at PurduePharmaClaims.com can call the referral line at 617-963-2714. Volunteers are not attorneys and cannot provide legal advice.