Tens of thousands of military service members who served between 2003 and 2015 have filed lawsuits alleging 3M combat earplugs were defective and caused partial or complete hearing loss or tinnitus.
The lawsuits accuse 3M of knowing their product was defective and continuing to sell it to the military, which would make 3M liable for service members’ medical expenses and other damages. The Fort Worth product liability lawyers at Anderson Cummings are investigating these claims and can help you determine if you have a case.
Our attorneys have a proven track record of success recovering compensation for injury victims who have suffered an injury due to the negligence of another. We have secured more than $100 million in compensation. The initial consultation is free, and we do not charge you anything up front to work on your case.
Partner Seth Anderson has been named one of Fort Worth’s top Personal Injury Lawyers by Fort Worth Texas Magazine.
Call today to schedule a free consultation: (817) 920-9000
Eligibility for Pursuing a Claim
Active military personnel, veterans or Department of Defense contractors who used 3M Combat Arms Earplugs (CAE) Version 2 and now suffer from impaired hearing, tinnitus or hearing loss may have a valid claim. It is important that you contact an attorney right away if you think you may be eligible to file.
When you meet with our attorneys in a free consultation, we may discuss some of the following to better understand your injuries and your specific situation:
- Medical diagnosis
- When you were diagnosed
- Pre-existing hearing conditions
- Dates of military service
- Equipment assigned to you for use
- If and where you were deployed
- Type of combat zones and training exercises you were exposed to
- Medical procedures you underwent to treat your hearing impairment
- Medical devices you now need to use
Every case is different, so it is important to discuss these things and more with our attorneys during your free consultation. We are prepared to answer your questions and assess whether you may have legal options.
How Much Might a 3M Combat Earplugs Case Be Worth?
If you are experiencing tinnitus, hearing loss or damaged hearing and you served in the military between 2003 and 2015, you may be eligible to recover compensation for medical bills, including the cost of surgery, hearing aids or other therapies to help treat your injuries.
Additionally, if your hearing impairment resulted in an early discharge from the service, early retirement or is keeping you from working, you may also be able to pursue compensation for lost wages and loss of future earning capacity.
You may also be eligible to recover non-economic damages such as pain and suffering (physical pain, headaches, dizziness, trouble sleeping, anxiety, etc.) and, depending on some of the facts of the case, punitive damages. This is because 3M is accused of marketing their product as safe and up to military standards when the contract between the company and the Department of Defense was finalized.
Call us today to learn your claim’s potential worth: (817) 920-9000
Would This Affect My Veterans’ Benefits?
Veterans may be concerned about taking legal action because they think it may affect their eligibility for disability compensation from the Department of Veterans’ Affairs. However, one thing should not affect the other. You can file a claim and continue receiving your benefits.
Why Should I Hire an Attorney?
The allegations against 3M are serious, but as the company continues to deny wrongdoing, it is important to have someone with knowledge and experience to help you build a strong case.
3M is a multinational conglomerate corporation that is likely bringing significant financial resources to bear on the earplugs litigation that is currently underway. Companies like this are looking to avoid responsibility for negligence.
The attorneys at Anderson Cummings have the resources and legal knowledge to take on negligent parties looking to escape liability. We have secured numerous multi-million-dollar verdicts and settlements. This includes a wrongful death settlement of nearly $2 million for a defective product injury.
Our attorneys work on contingency, meaning that we do not charge you anything while we work on your claim and you do not owe us anything unless we successfully recover compensation on your behalf. There is no risk to you.
Did 3M Know About its Defective Earplugs?
This is one of the main questions that will be considered in 3M litigation. If the company knew, it may be liable for service members’ hearing loss. While this is still somewhat of a question, there are various things that have come to light that strongly suggest 3M knew the earplugs would not provide sufficient protection for service members.
In 2018, the Department of Justice Announced that 3M agreed to pay $9.1 million to resolve allegations that it supplied the U.S. Department of Defense with defective combat earplugs to be used by service members.
These allegations were made in a whistleblower lawsuit filed in 2016 accusing 3M and Aearo Technologies (which 3M purchased) of lying to the Department of Defense about the effectiveness of their product. The complaint alleges that the companies were aware that the cone-shaped earplugs did not fit properly in the ear canals of some people and would become loose, thus failing to provide adequate protection from loud noises.
In hiding the damning information about the earplugs not working properly for some people, the complaint alleged, 3M and Aero engaged in a conspiracy to defraud the government.
Although the company agreed to settle the allegations, it maintains that it did not do anything wrong.
It has also been revealed Aearo Technologies falsified test results about the earplugs to say they complied with the military’s safety standards.
Have Any 3M Lawsuits Been Filed?
While 3M settled allegations of wrongdoing with the United States government, that settlement did not provide any compensation for soldiers and service members who suffered injuries due to the defective products.
So many lawsuits have been filed making similar allegations against 3M they were consolidated into a multidistrict litigation (MDL). In March 2021, the first bellwether trial began. The result of this trial and other bellwether trials will help both sides determine how juries are likely to rule in these cases. There could be a settlement of many of the other claims that have been filed. As of April 2021, there were more than 229,000 claims in the MDL.
Need Help with Your Claim? Call Today
Our attorneys have successfully recovered more than $100 million in compensation for injury victims and their families. We have 50 years of combined experience advocating for the injured.
We are prepared to help you build your case and seek evidence that may show 3M was negligent in providing defective earplugs to the military. Holding product manufacturers accountable may not only provide compensation to those who were injured, but also deter other companies from engaging in similar negligence in the future.
We can review your claim during a free consultation and if you choose to hire us, we do not charge you anything up front or while we work on your claim, so there is no risk to you.
No fees. No risks. Call today: (817) 920-9000