3m Earplug Lawsuits
Did you serve in the military between 2003 and 2015? Are you suffering from tinnitus or have you been diagnosed with hearing loss as a result of 3M Dual-End or Reversible Combat Arms Earplugs (CAEv2) that were issued to you? If so, you are likely eligible for significant compensation, and we are ready to help you get it.
The company that manufactured the CAEv2s, 3M and its predecessor, Aearo Technologies, have been accused of selling the earplugs to the military despite knowing that they were defective. The company knew that the earplugs were too short to properly fit into some users ears and had a tendency to loosen imperceptibly over time. This meant that they would not fit as intended and would not provide the necessary noise cancellation specifications they were supposed to.
If you are a veteran who suffered hearing loss due to defective 3M earplugs, we can help you understand your rights and legal options. We represent clients on a contingency-fee basis, which means you won’t owe us anything until we win compensation for you. Take our quiz to instantly see if you qualify.
COMMON TYPES OF 3M EARPLUG INJURIES
3M earplugs were sold to the military and were widely issued to service members from 2003 to 2015. Because of the defective design of the earplugs, many did not work as intended, and veterans like you have reported serious hearing loss symptoms as a result.
The two most common injuries associated with defective 3M Combat Arms earplugs include:
- Tinnitus – Tinnitus is an auditory and neurological condition caused by damage to hair cells in the inner ear. Symptoms include hearing noises in the ears, such as roaring, ringing, whistling, buzzing, or hissing. These noises can either be intermittent or continuous.
- Hearing Loss – Hearing Loss can be full, partial, or permanent. It is caused by constant exposure to loud noises like gunfire and machinery. Symptoms of hearing loss can include difficulty understanding spoken words, especially when there is background noise, muffled speech and sounds, and experiencing symptoms of tinnitus.
In addition to hearing loss and tinnitus, some veterans could also develop cognitive impairments or decline. A study done by scientists at Johns Hopkins found that individuals with hearing loss suffered cognitive decline 30 to 40 percent faster than individuals with normal hearing. This makes sense, since individuals with hearing loss or damage can easily become isolated from others, which, in turn, causes their mental abilities to decline.
FALSE CLAIMS ACT LAWSUIT AGAINST 3M
Today, many believe that 3M knew that the CAEv2 earplugs were defective but sold them to the U.S. military anyway from 2003-2015. The earplugs were used by service members deployed to Afghanistan and Iraq during this period. Upon their return home, many reported significant hearing loss or symptoms of tinnitus.
The False Claims Act was created in 1863 by the Department of Justice to hold anyone liable for knowingly submitting false claims to the federal government. When military members started reporting hearing loss and other combat-related hearing injuries, the government filed a lawsuit against 3M. This lawsuit claimed that 3M knew their CAEv2 earplugs did not meet the required safety standards but sold them to the US military anyway. Additionally, it was alleged that they knew the earplug’s design was too short to fit into some soldiers’ ears and falsified the results of safety tests.