Big Pharma accused of driving up health costs with opioid scourge

Travis Lenkner, a lawyer who is representing Green-Kuchta, said his firm, Keller Lenkner, has filed similar class action lawsuits in 15 other states. They represent a new front against the industry because they seek to recover damages paid by private people as opposed to the lawsuits brought by governments on behalf of the taxpayers.

“Most of the litigation that exists right now is brought on behalf of the taxpayers who paid more in taxes because there were public health care and public safety costs associated with the opioid health epidemic,” Lenkner said.

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Tom Kayes
Keller Lenkner & Robins Kaplan file class action against Uber on behalf of California Limo Company

From the complaint (available here): “Uber’s CEO, Dara Khosrowshahi, has admitted that Uber’s rapid accumulation of market share in the transportation industry was accompanied by a culture of rule breaking. In his words, “[t]he culture went wrong” at Uber and “[t]he governance of the company went wrong.” Khosrowshahi has assured the public that the company has changed its ways. But Uber has not changed its culture of rule breaking in two fundamental ways. First, Uber continues to misclassify its drivers as independent contractors when California law clearly requires that they be paid minimum wage and overtime and be given other protections and compensation as employees. Second, Uber uses these illegal cost savings to bolster a larger strategy of pricing its rides far below their true cost, and to take business and market share from competitors who pay the required costs of complying with the law. Each day that Uber misclassifies its primary workforce, it steals wages from drivers earning below a living wage and gains millions of dollars in unlawful cost savings. Uber uses these savings to price its services far below their cost. California prohibits this form of unfair competition and gives Plaintiff and a class of similarly situated companies a right to an injunction stopping these practices as well as treble damages.”

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Tom Kayes