North Carolina vs. Juul
The e-cigarette company Juul is set to pay $40 million to North Carolina after being accused of targeting young people with its products.
North Carolina Attorney General Josh Stein announced the settlement with Juul on Monday, alleging the company "targeted young people, including teens, with its highly addictive e-cigarette," and "lit the spark and fanned the flames of a vaping epidemic among our children," The Washington Post reports. The state had also accused Juul of "misrepresenting the potency and danger of nicotine in its products."
Another 13 states and Washington, D.C. have also sued Juul, according to the Post, but Stein's office touted the fact that North Carolina became the "first state in the nation to successfully hold JUUL accountable." This agreement includes numerous restrictions on Juul's business practices, such as requirements that it can no longer use most social media advertising or outdoor advertising near schools in North Carolina. The Post notes that Juul has already "been voluntarily adhering" to a number of the restrictions, though.
A Juul spokesperson said that this agreement "is consistent with our ongoing effort to reset our company and its relationship with our stakeholders, as we continue to combat underage usage and advance the opportunity for harm reduction for adult smokers," but the company denied wrongdoing or liability. North Carolina's lawsuit against Juul had been set to go to trial in July, according to The Wall Street Journal.
Stein said Monday the $40 million that Juul will pay the state over six years will "fund programs to help people quit e-cigarettes, prevent e-cigarette addiction, and research e-cigarettes."