Tennessee is joining four other states suing Purdue Pharma, maker of OxyContin and other drugs, for what the state calls “unlawful marketing and promotion” of the drugs.
State Attorney General Herbert Slatery announced the suit, filed in Knox County, on Tuesday.
The suit alleges Purdue violated the Tennessee Consumer Protection Act and created a statewide public nuisance. Slatery said three Tennesseans die each day from opioid-related overdoses.
Similar lawsuits were expected in Florida, North Carolina, North Dakota and Texas.
Company spokesman Bob Josephson says the civil lawsuits followed months of negotiations with state officials to address the opioid crisis.
He says the filing by these attorneys general promises costly and protracted litigation.