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Justices: Opioid lawsuit can proceed under drug dealer law

The Tennessee Supreme Court has ruled that opioid producers can be sued under the state’s Drug Dealer Liability Act.

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — The Tennessee Supreme Court has ruled that opioid producers can be sued under the state’s Drug Dealer Liability Act, allowing a lawsuit filed on behalf of children born dependent to opioids to move forward.

The high court made the unanimous ruling Thursday, stating that the plaintiffs have standing to bring their case against Endo Health Solutions, Endo Pharmaceuticals and Teva Pharmaceuticals USA under the law that protects people and entities injured by illegal drug use.

The ruling affirms a lower appeals court’s decision that the drug dealer law could apply. However, justices partly overturned that court, saying district attorneys could not remain plaintiffs.

The children plaintiffs still remain eligible.