COLUMBIA, S.C. (WCBD) – South Carolina Attorney General Alan Wilson on Wednesday announced a $86.5M payout from big tobacco companies to the state.
The $86,543,749.93 is part of the annual tobacco Master Settlement Agreement (MSA), which stems from a 1998 settlement between four tobacco companies and U.S. states/territories.
One of the things the MSA did was impose “major restrictions on the industry’s advertising and marketing.” Since its inception, the settlement has grown to include more than 50 tobacco companies, which are also beholden to its requirements.
The MSA also stipulated that the parties are entitled to yearly payouts “in perpetuity to help reimburse… for healthcare costs and harm caused by tobacco use.” It is the largest financial recovery in legal history, according to AG Wilson.
Since 1998, South Carolina’s MSA payout has amounted to $1,835,109,331. Most funds are put towards the S.C. Department of Health and Human Services Medicaid program.