Opioid Update: Ohio Asks Sixth Circuit for Mandamus while U.S. Chamber Says Muni Suits by Plaintiffs’ Firms Could Upend Civil Litigation


As we covered in July, the country has its eyes on an Ohio opioid MDL handling more than 2,000 lawsuits brought by more than 1,200 cities, counties, and tribes against drug manufacturers, distributors, and pharmacies.

Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost recently filed a mandamus petition at the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals to enjoin District Judge Dan Polster from proceeding with the October 21st trial for Cuyahoga and Summit counties. The counties seek billions of dollars to cope with the opioid crisis’ effects on their health care systems, law enforcement, and economies—in a bellwether case for the thousands of others pending across the country. According to Yost, the trial would “cripple the federal dual-sovereign structure of these United States,” by letting counties infringe on the state’s power to prosecute claims on behalf of its citizens.