3M and its subsidiaries have reached a monumental $6.01 billion settlement, effectively bringing an end to the ongoing lawsuit. To expedite the process, claimants opting for the accelerated pay option will receive their payments on a first-in, first-out basis, with disbursements anticipated to commence in early 2024.
Archer 3M Settlement Payout Date
Thousands of veterans and active military personnel have filed a lawsuit against 3M, alleging that the company’s earplugs resulted in hearing loss from exposure to loud noises during training exercises and on the battlefield.
To settle the claims, 3M agreed to pay a staggering $6.01 billion on August 29, 2023, as confirmed by the plaintiffs’ attorneys and the company. This marked the conclusion of a prolonged legal battle, making it one of the largest mass tort cases in American history.
Prior to 3M’s unsuccessful attempt to bring the claims to bankruptcy court, both parties had secured verdicts, leaving negotiations at a standstill. The lawsuit revolved around the use of 3M’s combat Arms earplugs by the US military between 2003 and 2015, both in Afghanistan and Iraq, as well as during training exercises.
The plaintiffs argued that the company deliberately concealed design defects in the earplugs, manipulated test results, and failed to provide proper instructions for their use, all of which contributed to hearing impairments. Payments from the Archer 3M Settlement are expected to be disbursed to eligible candidates by early 2024.
3m Earplugs Lawsuit Average Payout
The Settlement Allocation Master is currently determining the precise values for accelerated pay and full evaluation options. To provide prompt first-in, first-out payments upon reaching settlement milestones, the accelerated payment option will be faster, require less documentation, and operate more efficiently.
Under the full evaluation option, higher amounts will be offered based on the levels of hearing impairment and other factors determined by the Settlement Allocation Master and its designees. Since all victims have a vested interest in claim value, let’s revisit the individual settlement worth of these cases.
Previous jury judgments and documented settlement amounts in cases involving tinnitus or hearing loss indicate that the typical individual settlement award ranges from $50,000 to $300,000.
For cases of tinnitus without compensable hearing loss, the settlement amount will be $5,000 since there are no contemporaneous records to support or validate it.
If the plaintiff receives a tinnitus diagnosis or seeks treatment for symptoms within two years after discontinuing the use of earplugs, the recorded tinnitus settlement amount will be $10,000, quadrupling the payout.
For cases of slight hearing loss, described as a 15 dB hearing loss in at least one testing frequency, the settlement amount will be $10,000.
In cases of sensitive hearing loss, defined as a minimum of 20 dB but a maximum of 35 dB hearing loss in at least one testing frequency, the settlement amount will be $16,000.
For cases of moderate or greater hearing loss, described as a hearing loss of 40 dB or higher in at least one testing frequency, the settlement amount will be $24,000.
3M Earplug Lawsuit Settlement
According to Chris Seeger, the lead attorney representing the plaintiffs, more than $6 billion in settlement funds should be allocated to approximately 240,000 qualified individuals. Seeger expressed confidence that at least 98% of eligible claimants will choose to participate. However, if this threshold is not met, 3M retains the option to withdraw from the agreement.
In a statement, the corporation clarified that the settlement funds will be disbursed over the course of six years, from 2023 to 2029. Notably, $1 billion of the settlement will be in the form of 3M shares. Additionally, 3M emphasized that entering into the settlement does not imply an admission of wrongdoing.
3m Earplugs Lawsuit Eligibility
To be eligible for the settlement, individuals must have a claim related to Combat Arms Earplugs (CAE). This includes claims filed in a complaint or dismissed without prejudice in the MDL or the coordinated Minnesota state court (MN Court) proceeding. However, individuals who had their CASE claim dismissed with prejudice before the settlement deadline are not qualified to file a claim. Our legal firm is currently evaluating claims that meet the following criteria:
1. You were in the armed forces between 2003 and 2015.
2. During your military service, you were required to wear earplugs.
3. You were exposed to loud noises during your military duty.
4. You have been diagnosed with tinnitus or hearing loss.
We will thoroughly review all claims that satisfy these criteria.