WASHINGTON, Oct. 28, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — Alliance For Consumers applauds Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody for using potent, emerging consumer protection approaches in reaching her settlement of opioid-related claims against Walmart.
“The way to help consumers is to speed up cases and help get relief to victims faster, with less money going out the door to lawyers and with less reliance on plodding, bureaucratic multi-state processes that put consumers behind the eight ball,” said O.H. Skinner, the executive director for Alliance For Consumers. “Attorney General Moody’s Walmart settlement illustrates positive trends in the resolution of high-profile consumer protection cases that help do exactly that.”
Notably, Attorney General Moody’s settlement shows that public officials can resolve substantial matters of national scope without resorting to litigation or outside contingency-fee counsel. Attorney General Moody generated over $200 million without turning to litigation or outside counsel. This avoided added costs, fees, and delays while ensuring more settlement money for the state and its citizens.
Attorney General Moody’s settlement also marks another encouraging example of a state using a “most favored nation” clause to speed up recoveries and prevent the bureaucratic quagmire that can come with waiting for a global resolution of state claims across the country or refusing to move until other, less innovative states are ready to act.
“Most favored nation” clauses ensure that if another state obtains more in settling the same claims, then the state that moved first, and obtained the “most favored nation” clause, will get its settlement value raised up to the higher level. Florida’s Walmart settlement is at least the second time that Attorney General Moody has employed a most-favored-nation provision. And it comes on the heels of Texas employing such a provision this year in another opioids-related case.
“Most favored nation” clauses help ensure that states can resolve claims today, and get relief for their citizens today, without delaying resolution for fear that a marginally superior settlement might come to another state in the future.
“More states and attorneys general should look to resolve consumer claims swiftly, without litigation, without outside counsel, and with protections like most-favored-nation clauses,” Skinner emphasized. “That is the way to improve consumer protection, and this settlement is worth calling out as a landmark in that regard.”
Alliance For Consumers is a nonprofit organization that promotes best practices that advance the interests of everyday consumers.
SOURCE Alliance for Consumers