On June 26, 2018, Giskan Solotaroff and Anderson LLP filed a complaint against JUUL on behalf of a 15-year-old, D.P., and his mother. The complaint details that after being introduced to JUUL in during his freshman year, D.P. became addicting to vaping and nicotine. In it, attorney Jason Solotaroff states: "D.P. has been unable to refrain from JUULing. D.P. is severely addicted to nicotine, which has altered his brain physically and chemically, and has put him at risk for a lifetime of life-long health problems, to say nothing of the economic costs of nicotine addiction."
JUULing is the act of using a JUUL vaping device, an item that is rechargeable and has a similar appearance to that of a USB drive, which is filled with a JUUL pod, a nicotine solution. The widespread use of vaping among teens has been covered by a variety of news outlets such as the New York Times and Mashable. As the complaint discusses, JUUL has geared much of its advertising towards teens using bright colors and attractive models, which selling a product that is reported to have a higher dose of nicotine than tradition cigarettes. Furthermore, the product draws in young users by coming in flavors such as Mango and Creme Brulee.
Since it's release, the Center for Disease Control and Prevention has reported numbers of high school students smoke using a JUUL have steadily increased. GSA has heard stories of students other than D.P. who cannot seem to avoid the use of JUUL cigarettes on their school campuses and have become addicted to nicotine themselves. This does not come as a surprise due to the ease that minors are able to buy JUULs and JUUL pods and due to the company's heavy social media presence. On July 24, Massachusetts' Attorney General, Maura Healey, announced that the state would begin an investigation on the company due to determine its practices of targeting minors and enticing them to use their device. In the press conference she stated, "they're engaged in an effort to get kids addicted, to get kids hooked, so that they'll have customers for the rest of their lives."
Good Morning America covered GSA's JUUL case and featured other high school students who have become addicted to using the vaping device. Attorney Jason Solotaroff spoke on JUUL's widespread use in schools and the ease of developing an addiction.
Wired covered Giskan Solotaroff & Anderson's case against JUUL along with two other cases that criticize the company's practice of deceptively marketing their product as a safe alternative to smoking, even though "it contains more potent doses of nicotine than cigarettes." The article highlights the widespread mistrust of JUUL due to their misleading advertising practices, showing that both adults and children were made unaware of the device's adverse effects. GSA is continuing to work on the case for D.P. and his mother and to seek some form of relief.
If you have questions on the case, please contact (646)200-6265.