Energy Drinks Settlement

The energy drink industry faces mounting litigation due to side effects and deceptive advertising. There is a strong precedent for settlement in these cases.

Energy Drinks Settlement

For all its bluster about the safety of its products, the energy drink industry sure does settle a lot of lawsuits. That’s because their cans fail to warn against consumption by minors; by people with heart conditions, seizure disorders, or diabetes; by those on medication (for ADHD, among other things); or in combination with exercise. Study after study shows that energy drinks are extremely dangerous for those subgroups.

So when someone is injured or killed after consuming energy drinks, the last thing Big Energy wants to do is go to court. The science is not on their side, they market their products to children and adolescents, and they can’t say they warned anyone of the dangers—because they deny them.

This industry has faced a litany of litigation due to serious side effects and deceptive advertising practices. As seen below, there is a strong precedent for settlement in these cases. Though the settlement amount is usually unknown (most plaintiffs sign a nondisclosure agreement), it is often in the hundreds of thousands or millions.

Fournier & Crossland v. Monster Beverage Corporation (2012)

In December 2011, a healthy 14-year-old Maryland girl named Anais Fournier went into cardiac arrest and died after drinking two Monster Energy drinks in a 24-hour period. In 2012, her family filed a wrongful death suit against Monster, reaching an undisclosed settlement in Summer 2015.

Morris v. Monster Beverage Corporation (2013)

In July 2012, a healthy 19-year-old Maryland boy named Alex Morris went into cardiac arrest and died after regularly drinking Monster over a three-year period. His family filed a wrongful death lawsuit against Monster in 2013, reaching an undisclosed settlement in Spring 2015.

San Francisco v. Monster Beverage Corporation (2013)

In May 2013, the city attorney of San Francisco, Dennis Herrera, sued Monster Energy for targeting children in its marketing, calling it “the industry’s worst offender.” This case’s status is unknown.

Terry v. Red Bull (2013)

In November 2011, a healthy 33-year-old Brooklyn man named Cory Terry suffered a heart attack and died after downing Red Bull in between basketball games. In 2013, his family filed an $85 million wrongful death lawsuit against Red Bull, which the company presumably settled for an undisclosed amount.

Felts v. Monster Beverage Corporation (2014)

In June 2012, a healthy 42-year-old Kansas City man named Shane Felts died after consuming one Monster Energy drink a day for just two weeks. His wife filed a wrongful death lawsuit against Monster in 2014, reaching an undisclosed settlement in the Spring of 2015.

Careathers v. Red Bull (2014)

After ten years of consuming Red Bull with no boost to his physical or mental performance, Benjamin Careathers sued the company for false advertising. In October 2014, Red Bull reached a $13 million settlement because it doesn’t give you wings. (Contrary to advertising claims, Red Bull does not boost reaction time or concentration, or offer any other health benefits.) Anyone who had bought a Red Bull was entitled to $10—or $15 worth of Red Bull products—a number that was reduced to $4.25 due to the overwhelming number of plaintiffs.

Smith v. Monster Beverage Corporation (2016)

In February 2016, a Washington state man named Brian Smith sued Monster after suffering a stroke that he says was brought on by downing four 16-ounce cans of Monster Energy in a single day: equivalent to 640 mg of caffeine, or 18 Cokes’ worth. Mr. Smith says he has suffered lasting injuries since the stroke occurred in 2013. This case is still active.

Wade v. Red Bull (2016)

In 2014, a Savannah, Georgia man named William Jacob Wade suffered a fatal aortic dissection after consuming Red Bull. In March 2016, Mr. Wade’s mother filed a $35 million wrongful death suit against Red Bull. The complaint says, “Red Bull was a substantial factor in causing Mr. Wade’s death.” This case is still active. v. The Energy Drink Industry (Ongoing) refuses to allow this public health crisis to proceed unabated. We have filed 13 lawsuits against Monster—and several more against Red Bull—on the grounds of severe injuries or death, inadequate labeling, and improper testing.