J&J to pay $181 million to settle improper marketing claims

NEW BRUNSWICK, N.J., Thu Aug 30, 2012 –Johnson & Johnson said it has agreed to pay $181 million to resolve consumer fraud claims by 36 U.S. states and the District of Columbia that it improperly marketed its Risperdal antipsychotic drug for unapproved uses.

The diversified healthcare company, which has also been targeted by federal authorities for separate but related criminal allegations, said it had already set aside funds to cover the civil settlement. The funds will be divided among the states participating in the agreement, announced on Thursday.

The company said the settlement was not an admission of wrongdoing.

J&J to pay $158 million to settle Texas Risperdal case

AUSTIN, Texas ― Johnson & Johnson said on Thursday it will pay $158 million to settle a Texas lawsuit accusing the drugmaker of improperly marketing its Risperdal anti-psychotic drug to state residents on the Medicaid health program for the poor.

The settlement fully resolves all Risperdal-related claims in Texas, the company said. The agreement is specific to the state of Texas and does not involve any other ongoing state or federal Risperdal litigation.

The deal settles claims brought by Texas in 2004 and involves alleged Medicaid overpayments during the years 1994 to 2008 “and will circumvent potentially lengthy and costly appellate activities,” according to a statement from J&J’s Janssen Pharmaceuticals unit.

The complaint against J&J and several of its units filed in U.S. district court in Texas had alleged that company representatives “targeted every level of the Texas Medicaid Program with misrepresentations about the safety, superiority, efficacy, appropriate uses and cost effectiveness of Risperdal.”