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AstraZeneca PLC (AZN) Pays $26 Million to Settle Seroquel Suit


8/27/2012 7:45:50 AM

For the past year, AstraZeneca was aggressively pursuing a strategy to challenge a state lawsuit that relied on the use of private law firms and contingency fee arrangement. Several drugmakers, in fact, adopted this approach in response to state lawsuits that charged various drugs were marketed illegally and state programs and taxpayers overpaid for the medicines. Drugmakers believe the outside law firms have improper incentives and due process rights are jeopardized. Instead of proceeding, however, with one such effort in South Carolina, AstraZeneca has now agreed to pay $26 million to settle the litigation. In this instance, the South Carolina attorney general sought to recover funds spent to treat side-effects for the Seroquel antipsychotic and for reimbursements for alleged off-label uses. Earlier this year, a South Carolina state court judge denied a motion to dismiss a lawsuit that AstraZeneca had filed.

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