Oklahoma judge wants more answers on $85M opioid settlement

NORMAN, Okla. (AP) — An Oklahoma judge is declining to approve the state’s proposed $85 million settlement with an opioid maker until he’s assured it complies with a new law targeting such deals.

The attorney general’s office says Cleveland County Judge Thad Balkman on Monday ordered attorneys for both the state and Israeli-owned Teva Pharmaceuticals to file additional paperwork before he approves the settlement .

Attorney General spokesman Alex Gerszewski (ger-SHES’-kee) says the judge wants both sides to address how distribution of the money conforms to the new law .

Concerned about how the state’s $270 million settlement with Purdue Pharmaceuticals was structured, the Republican-led Legislature passed a law directing any settlement funds directly into the state treasury.

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Oklahoma’s lawsuit blaming consumer products giant Johnson & Johnson and some of its subsidiaries for contributing to the opioid epidemic is continuing.

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