DENVER (KDVR) — Nearly three years after filing a lawsuit against Juul for marketing toward children and teens, Colorado Attorney General Phil Weiser announced that his office has agreed to a settlement with the e-cigarette manufacturer.
According to a release from Weiser’s office, the multistate settlement is worth a total of $462 million, of which Colorado will get $31.7 million.
The money will be used to cover costs and attorneys’ fees, as well as “other consumer-welfare purposes.” The AG’s release said this includes efforts to prevent tobacco use among kids and teens.
“While no amount of money or new restrictions on Juul’s business practices can undo the harms caused by the teen vaping epidemic, this settlement will make great strides towards reducing it and can support young people who are hurting now more than ever,” Weiser said in the release.
Juul was accused of marketing to teens using social media influencers to promote its product and brand ambassadors who gave free samples to young people in the state.
According to the AG’s office, state data from 2021 shows that 16% of Colorado teens reported vaping in the past month. In 2020, when the state filed the lawsuit, Colorado was the No.1 state for teen vaping per capita.
In a statement about the settlement sent to FOX31, a Juul spokesperson said underage use of the company’s products has dropped by 95% since 2019 based on a youth tobacco survey. The spokesperson also said that the company’s settlement includes no admission of wrongdoing.
“With this settlement, we are nearing total resolution of the company’s historical legal challenges and securing certainty for our future. We have now settled with 47 states and territories, providing over $1 billion to participating states, in addition to our global resolution of the U.S. private litigation,” the statement said in part.