FREE Case Review (866) 588-0600

How Long Will the 3M Earplug Lawsuit Take?

If you filed a lawsuit against 3M after suffering hearing loss, tinnitus, or other hearing problems you believe were caused by the company’s allegedly defective Combat Arms Earplugs, you may be wondering how long your case will take to settle. 3M is currently in settlement negotiations with plaintiffs’ attorneys, but the parties have yet to reach an agreement.
Award Logos
Awards & recognition
C.L. Mike Schmidt Published by C.L. Mike Schmidt

What's the Problem with 3M Earplugs?

After numerous reports of hearing loss, tinnitus, and deafness were reported by U.S. military service members, the Department of Justice launched an investigation into the safety of 3M Combat Arms Military Earplugs. Investigators revealed that the earplugs were too short for proper insertion into the ear canal.

Due to the short length of the plugs, they are reportedly prone to losing their seal with the ear. When the seal breaks, the user's ears are not protected from loud noises, the Justice Department concluded.

Related Article: 3M Military Earplug Lawsuit Update

3M Earplug Whistleblower

In 2016, a whistleblower filed a lawsuit against 3M under the False Claims Act alleging that the company manufactured defective hearing protection devices for the armed forces.

The complaint alleged that the company knowingly sold defective dual-ended military earplugs to the military, putting soldiers at extreme risk of extensive loss of hearing. In 2018, the U.S. Justice Department reached an agreement with 3M to pay a $9.1 million settlement to resolve the allegations.

How Much Can I Expect From a Lawsuit?

Based on prior settlements in cases involving hearing loss and tinnitus, our lawyers expect the trial value of cases to be between $25,000 and $300,000 per plaintiff. However, this is merely speculation, as no one knows for sure how the litigation process will play out.

The expected average individual settlement amount is rising based on the verdicts from the 16 bellwether trials. If 3M continues to try these cases rather than settle them, the compensation payouts in the earplug litigation will likely soar much higher.

Related Article: 3M Earplug Litigation Payout Info

Why are Earplug Hearing Loss Cases So Complicated?

The vast majority of lawsuits rely on the legal concept of product liability, in which a plaintiff seeks to hold a manufacturer responsible for health problems caused by an unreasonably dangerous or otherwise defective product. These types of lawsuits are quite complex, as there are stacks of medical records to sift through, plus expert witnesses to hear from on both sides of the case.

3M may even try to claim that a pre-existing condition is the cause of your hearing problems. All this means is that a lawsuit may take longer than a less complex lawsuit.

Related Articles:

See all related product liability lawsuits our attorneys have covered.