Lawsuits have been filed across the country on behalf of people suffering from vaping-related lung illness. The legal actions largely target JUUL Labs Inc., the biggest player in the e-cigarette market. Altria Group Inc., an investor of JUUL and owner of tobacco giant Philip Morris, is a named defendant in some of the cases.
Allegations in the Latest Vaping Lawsuits
Common allegations in the legal actions include:
- Targeting e-cigarettes to youth through advertising, colors and flavors
- Failing to warn about the dangerous levels of nicotine contained in e-cigarettes
- Failing to warn about the risk of lung illness and injuries related to vaping
Many of the lawsuits stem from allegations that JUUL specifically targeted youth with its e-cigarette products. One lawsuit filed by the parents of a 15-year-old in New York State says that the company’s advertisements exploit themes that especially resonate with teens. Another lawsuit filed in Indianapolis alleges that JUUL’s flavored e-cigarette products were designed to appeal to young smokers. An Ohio mother filed suit against JUUL, claiming its pods “permanently injured and altered” her twin daughters’ developing brains. One of the teens attempted suicide after her mother told her she couldn’t vape anymore.
In Illinois, an 18-year-old is suing JUUL after he says vaping gave him the lung function of a 70-year-old. In marketing its products to young people, he alleges, the company spread the message that vaping could boost users’ social status.
The State’s Attorney’s Office in Lake County, IL also filed suit against JUUL, accusing the company of violating the Prevention of Tobacco Use by Minors and Sale and Distribution of Tobacco Products Act. In a statement, Lake County State’s Attorney Michael G. Nerheim noted the similarities between JUUL’s advertisements and those of cigarette companies in the past, which preyed on teens by glamorizing their products with the goal of getting them hooked on nicotine.
Why People Are Seeking Legal Representation
Seeking the help of an experienced lawyer can provide legal protection for a person suffering from vape addiction or related lung illness. Big companies have the resources and legal teams to minimize individuals’ recourse and their voice in court. Hiring legal representation can level the playing field and help ensure that victims have the power to stand up to the company that let them get hurt without warning.
Each state limits the time a person has to file a claim against a company that injured or wronged them. The sooner victims or their parents speak with an attorney, the sooner they can protect their legal rights and explore the possibility of legal action.