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3M Bankruptcy Tactic Fails as Combat Earplug Suits Move to Trial

  • Analysts, legal experts say pressure mounting to settle claims
  • Company hoped bankruptcy would shield it from 230,000 lawsuits
3M Co. planned to use a bankruptcy rule to shield itself from the 230,000 lawsuits over its military earplug. 

3M Co. planned to use a bankruptcy rule to shield itself from the 230,000 lawsuits over its military earplug. 

Source: 3M Co. 

3M Co.’s plan to use controversial bankruptcy rules to shield itself from some 230,000 lawsuits over military earplugs looked like a relatively simple fix to a long-simmering problem that could cost it billions of dollars.

Like most things that sound too good to be true, it was. Now it may be time for Plan B: a comprehensive, and still costly, settlement process for US soldiers who claim hearing damage.