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New Mexico 3M Earplug Lawyer

From 2003 to 2015, the 3M Company sold dual-ended Combat Arms Earplugs Version 2 (caev2) to all branches of the U.S. military. Although these earplugs were intended to protect troops during training and on the battlefield, an investigation revealed that the products were defective and sent hundreds of thousands of veterans home with severe hearing loss and tinnitus (ringing in the ears).
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C.L. Mike Schmidt Published by C.L. Mike Schmidt

How are 3M Combat Arms Earplugs Defective?

3M dual-ended Combat Arms Earplugs Version 2 (caev2) were designed to be worn in 2 ways. When worn in the “open” position, the earplugs were intended to protect users from loud noises of combat such as gunshots, explosions, and heavy machinery, while still allowing the wearer to hear quieter noises, such as conversations and orders from commanding officers. When worn in the “closed” position, the 3M Combat Arms Earplugs were intended to block out all noise.

Unfortunately, there was a problem with the design of the earplugs. They would gradually become loose without the user realizing it. This left troops exposed to loud noises, eventually causing many veterans to develop irreversible hearing loss and tinnitus.

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3M Hearing Loss Symptoms

Most veterans who used 3M Combat Arms Earplugs have been diagnosed with 2 different types of ear problems: tinnitus and hearing loss. While everyone is different, you should have your hearing checked if you have developed any of the following symptoms.

Hearing Loss

  • Trouble understanding speech
  • Muffling of general sounds
  • Asking others to repeat themselves repeatedly
  • Turning up the TV or radio volume
  • Difficulty hearing noises such as doorbells or alarm clocks
  • Speaking more loudly than you used to


Tinnitus is persistently hearing sounds that aren’t really there. These sounds could be loud or subtle and may take many forms, such as:

  • Ringing
  • Buzzing
  • Crackling
  • Clicking
  • Humming

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Who is Responsible for 3M Earplug Injuries?

In 2018, 3M settled a whistleblower lawsuit with the U.S. government for $9.1 million. The government alleged in the suit that 3M knew about the problems with its earplugs as early as 2000, yet continued to sell the products to the military until 2015.

Although the whistleblower lawsuit compensated the military for its purchase of the Combat Arms Earplugs and the wrongdoing by 3M, it does not compensate the veterans who were actually injured by the defect.

To date, more than 300,000 earplug lawsuits have been filed against 3M. There have been so many claims filed against 3M over this issue that a multidistrict litigation (MDL) was established to consolidate the claims in the Northern District of Florida. The MDL has grown to become the largest mass tort in American history.

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What Compensation Could I Be Awarded?

Filing a lawsuit against 3M over defective Combat Arms Earplugs may allow you to get a 3M payout compensation for any damages or losses you have suffered due to your injuries. Compensation may include money for:

  • Doctor’s fees
  • Medical expenses
  • Medications
  • Hearing aids and other assistive devices
  • Lost wages
  • Lost benefits
  • Loss of earning capacity
  • Emotional distress
  • Pain and suffering
  • Loss of enjoyment of life

Although any amount of compensation cannot fully restore the losses you have suffered as a result of your hearing problems, they can assist with the financial burden of your injury. A personal injury lawsuit also sends a message to the 3M Company that it cannot sacrifice the health of our troops for the sake of profit.

What is the Average Payout for the 3M Lawsuit?

The settlement money you may receive through the filing of a 3M Earplug Lawsuit will depend on a variety of factors, including the extent of hearing damage, the need for future care, if you are still able to work or not, if your daily activities or hobbies are affected, and if you experienced any psychological affects, such as Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) or a traumatic brain injury (TBI).

According to many experts, the predicted average lawsuit payout is somewhere between $50,000 and $100,000.

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