Were you on active duty in 2003–2015?
Were you stationed in combat zones such as Iraq or Afghanistan?
Do you suffer from tinnitus or hearing loss?
If you answered ‘yes’ to the above, you should consult an earplug hearing loss lawyer from the law firm of McEldrew Young Purtell Merritt right away.
In 2018, 3M, on behalf of its subsidiary Aearo Technologies, Inc., settled a case with the U.S. Department of Justice for $9.1 million. The case regarded a product defect in 3M Combat Arms Earplugs, Version 2 (CAEv2). They were given as standard issue to all branches of the U.S. military stationed in Iraq, Afghanistan, and other combat zone areas.
Since this time, millions of veterans have suffered from tinnitus and hearing loss. It could be that the 3M Combat Arms Earplugs, Version 2 (CAEv2) are the reason why they can no longer hear. Now, with a hearing loss lawyer on your side, compensation may be available by pursuing 3M combat earplug lawsuits in PA.
For an immediate consultation, please call the law firm of McEldrew Young Purtell Merritt.
If You Were Deployed in the Following Conflicts, You May Be at Risk
From 2003 to 2015, the U.S. government purchased over 2 million 3M Combat Arms Earplugs, Version 2 (CAEv2) from 3M-owned Aearo Technologies. These earplugs had a known product defect — they weren’t long enough to be securely inserted in the ears of some wearers. When these service members moved, the earplugs would shift imperceptibly, exposing their wearers to the very harms they were meant to protect against.
Now, thousands of veterans of foreign conflicts are finding themselves dealing with injuries they thought they were protected against. If you were deployed in any of the following conflicts and have experienced hearing loss, you may have been injured by these detective earplugs:
- The Iraq War
- Operation Ocean Shield in the Indian Ocean
- Northwest Pakistan
- Libyan Crisis (2011)
- Iraq (2014 to 2017)
- Syria (2014 to present)
- Yemeni Civil War (2015 to present)
- Libya (2015 to present)
How 3M Combat Arms Earplugs, Version 2 (CAEv2) May Have Failed Safety Tests
In the False Claims Act suit brought against 3M by an employee at rival government contractor Moldex-Metric Inc., it was alleged that 3M falsified information to obtain government funds. Although 3M settled the lawsuit, it didn’t admit wrongdoing.
Now, 160,000 veterans, current soldiers and civilians are suing 3M for hearing damage related to the earplugs. The evidence they are relying on is the same evidence Moldex-Metric put forth — that Aearo/3M never put the CAEv2 through combat conditions testing, and that the earplugs had a mere 10 percent of claimed effectiveness.
As Lucas Kunce, a former military officer familiar with defense procurement, told The American Prospect, “This appears to be another case of financiers monetizing risk… They appear to have converted a risk to service members’ hearing into profit for themselves. I wish I could say this was a one-of-a-kind case, but it’s not.”
The Injuries Which Can Result from Wearing Defective Combat Earplugs
Hearing loss and tinnitus are the two most common injuries that can result from wearing defective combat earplugs. These injuries result from regular exposure to very loud noises.
Tinnitus is a constant sound in the ears. It often presents as a ringing sound, but it can manifest as a hissing, clicking, buzzing, roaring or whistling sound. It may also lead to:
- Difficulty concentrating or focusing
- Anxiety and depression
Hearing loss can be partial or full. It may also lead to:
- Difficulty communicating with others
- Increased isolation
- Limited employment possibilities
Claiming Damages for Your Hearing Loss Resulting from 3M Combat Arms Earplugs, Version 2 (CAEv2)
It does not matter when you wore the Combat Arms Earplugs. If you wore them, and were in combat zones as a U.S. military servicemember, you may be able to file 3M combat earplug lawsuits in Pennsylvania for monetary compensation for:
- Medical bills
- Loss of earning potential
- Economic losses
- Pain and suffering
- Non-economic losses such as the loss of enjoyment in activities healthy people take for granted
- Mental anguish
A lawsuit may also cover the costs of corrective treatment for your hearing loss, including hearing aids.
Do You Need an Earplug Hearing Loss Lawyer?
Technically, you can file a claim on your own. However, doing so may prove to be more complicated than you might have initially thought. You will need to prove that it was the 3M Combat Arms Earplugs, Version 2 (CAEv2) that caused your hearing loss and nothing else. It is likely that 3M will fight these claims, to ensure minimum payout and the least amount of legal repercussions.
As your earplug hearing loss lawyer, we handle such lawsuits on contingency. This means you do not have to pay anything up front, only if you win. What you pay upon victory should be discussed upon initial agreement. In general, this is 30 percent of the settlement.
A good earplug hearing loss lawyer will review all of your losses that resulted from your use of the 3M Combat Arms Earplugs, Version 2 (CAEv2) and work hard to get you maximum damages.
When to Consult with an Experienced Product Liability Lawyer
As an earplug hearing loss lawyer, we understand what a struggle it can be to have difficulty communicating with loved ones or being unable to listen to music. We know that a constant ringing in the ears may lead to great mental and emotional suffering. The effects of hearing loss can exacerbate depression and PTSD, both of which are common in veterans.
At McEldrew Young Purtell Merritt, we have over 30 years of experience in litigating product liability cases. We welcome clients local to our Philadelphia offices and those from New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania and further afield.
To schedule a meeting for a free consultation, fill out our form or call us directly at 1-866-721-8431.