Philadelphia 3M Earplug Lawsuit Attorney
Combat earplugs manufactured by the 3M Company from 2003 to 2015 had been found to be defective and may have caused serious hearing and ear damage to military service members and contractors. These were standard issue combat earplugs used in both combat zone as well as during training. 3M was sued under the False Claims Act and found guilty of misleading government officials concerning these devices. Now, military service members and contractors are working to seek compensation from 3M for their injuries.
Background on 3M Earplugs
The 3M Duel-Ended Combat Earplugs were designed to protect the hearing of the wearer by specializing in two functions – when inserted one way into the ear, the wearer would be able to hear sounds at reasonable volumes, including speech. When inserted in the other direction, the wearer would get better noise protection from loud sounds such as gunfire or explosions. However, the design did not allow for the earplug to reach deep enough into the ear of the wearer. This flaw caused the earplugs to become loose and allow loud sounds to penetrate and cause potential ear damage. Whistleblower information and the subsequent False Claims Act case revealed that 3M knew of this defect and did not alert the military or other government officials.
Injuries associated with 3M Earplugs
Injuries associated with these defective 3M combat earplugs include the following:
- Severe-related bilateral or unilateral hearing loss (hearing loss in one or both ears)
- Tinnitus (ringing in the ears)
- Or both hearing loss and tinnitus
Criteria + Litigation Updates
In order to be eligible to file a lawsuit against 3M to recover compensation, a person with qualifying injuries must have:
- Served in the US military, reserves, or as a Department of Defense contractor between the years 2003 and 2015.
- Used military-issued duel-end 3M Combat Arms Earplugs during their military or contractor service.
- Been diagnosed with a qualifying injury during their enlistment period or at the time of their discharge.
A person seeking compensation for hearing loss or injury caused by 3M earplugs must not have:
- Had any pre-existing hearing loss or tinnitus diagnosed.
- Any of the following:
- Waardenburg syndrome
- Branchiootorenal syndrome
- Stickler syndrome
- Usher syndrome
- Pendred syndrome
- Alport syndrome
- Meniere’s disease
In July of 2018, 3M Company paid $9.1 million to settle claims that they knowingly sold defective earplugs to the US military and violated the False Claims Act. However, this settlement did not resolve any injury cases of US military service members or contractors. In April 2019, 3M earplug lawsuits were consolidated into multi-district litigation in the Northern District of Florida under Judge M. Casey Rogers. Very recently, a judge determined that 3M is not eligible for governmental immunity for their actions related to the injuries in these cases, thereby opening the door to the continuation of the class-action lawsuit they are facing.
Contact a Philadelphia 3M Earplugs Lawyer
At the Ciccarelli Law Offices, our qualified and experienced team is ready to help you when you need a Philadelphia 3M earplug attorney. Let our injury attorneys investigate your case so we can secure the compensation you need for medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering damages, and more. Contact us to get a free case evaluation or by calling (215) 228-0100.