Are You Concerned About Your Teen’s Vaping Habit or Addiction to Using JUUL or other E-Cigarettes?

If you are concerned with your teen’s JUUL use or vaping habits, or if you started vaping as teen and are now addicted to nicotine, we want to hear from you. We would like to hold JUUL Labs accountable. Please contact any member of the Keller Rohrback JUUL team, attorneys Derek Loeser, Dean Kawamoto, Gretchen Freeman Cappio, or Alison Gaffney, at  800-776-6044  or via email at consumer@kellerrohrback.com to discuss your concerns and potential legal claims.

The JUUL is a type of e-cigarette—an electronic nicotine delivery system that heats liquid containing nicotine, flavoring, and chemicals into an aerosol that is inhaled. Nicotine is addictive and can harm an adolescent’s developing brain.

JUUL Labs, the e-cigarette manufacturer partially owned by Altria (NYSE:MO), the parent company of cigarette maker Philip Morris (NYSE:PM), has transformed the e-cigarette market since it launched in 2015. Dubbed the “iPhone of e-cigarettes,” JUUL’s device appeals to teenagers because of its sleek and sophisticated appearance and because it is small and easy to conceal.

JUUL also markets its products in flavors that are particularly appealing for kids and teenagers. The patented JUULpods come in flavors such as mango, fruit, cucumber, crème, and mint. But that is where the appeal ends. JUULpods contain 59 mg per ml of nicotine—roughly three times the nicotine limit in Europe—while utilizing acids that reduce the harshness associated with smoking and other e-cigarettes. The end result is a nicotine delivery system that, according to Truth Initiative, doubles the concentration and nearly triples the delivery speed of nicotine compared to the average e-cigarette.

JUUl’s rise in popularity has been meteoric. Over one million JUUL devices were sold between 2015 and 2017. JUUL Labs now controls 70% of the market and last year had retail sales of $942.6 million. In December 2018, Altria invested $12.8 billion to acquire a 35% stake in JUUL. Overnight, millions of teens became Philip Morris customers. JUUL, like Philip Morris before it, would have you believe that its products are only intended for adults. But according to researchers at Stanford University School of Medicine, Juul’s advertising was “patently youth oriented” from the start with its vivid colors, youthful models, and candy-like flavors.  In 2018 alone there was an 80% increase in high school students vaping and a 50% increase in middle school students using e-cigarettes. More than 20% of children under the age of 18 are using e-cigarettes, compared to less than 3% of adults. The Surgeon General has characterized e-cigarette use by youth as a public health epidemic.

Prior to JUUL’s launch, youth nicotine use had been on a steady decline: from 2000 to 2017, the smoking rate among high school students fell by 73%. That trend has now been completely reversed. Between 2017 and 2018 the number of American teenagers using any tobacco product has increased by nearly 40%, the largest single year increase in youth tobacco use ever. In 2018, more than one in four American high school students reported using a tobacco product in the past 30 days.

Congress informed JUUL Labs that the Surgeon General, the Director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the former Food & Drug Administration (FDA) Commissioner, and the Secretary of the Department of Health & Human Services (HHS) all pointed to JUUL Labs as a primary cause of youth e-cigarette epidemic. Multiple states have launched investigations of JUUL Labs, and in 2018 the FDA raided JUUL Lab’s headquarters. But while government regulators may force JUUL to change how it does business in the future, action needs to be taken on behalf of the millions of kids addicted to nicotine as a result of JUUL Lab’s products and business practices.

About Keller Rohrback L.L.P.

Keller Rohrback, a leading consumer protection firm, is passionate about litigation that serves the public interest.  We are playing a major role in the nationwide opioid litigation seeking to hold opioid manufacturers, distributors and retail pharmacy chains liable for flooding the country with opioids.  We filed one of the first lawsuits against Volkswagen for lying to regulators and cheating on emission standards with their diesel defeat device vehicles, we sued Wall Street for causing the financial crisis, and we are suing Facebook for disclosing its users’ information without their permission. With offices in Seattle, Phoenix, New York, Santa Barbara, Oakland, and Missoula, Keller Rohrback is well equipped to hold corporations accountable for harming the pubic.

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