Pulling the Wrong Lever Opens a Trap Door: Using Taxes To Fight the Opioid Epidemic
Volume 93, No. 2, Winter 2021
By Michelle M. Kwon [PDF]

This Article posits that opioid excise taxes are misguided if their purpose is to reduce consumption unless the taxes are reflected in consumers’ out-of-pocket expenses. Such taxes may also be an ineffective mechanism in the effort to cause drug makers to internalize the social costs of their products. Nonetheless, opioid excise taxes might generate much needed funding for states to battle the opioid epidemic. This Article considers certain issues in designing such a tax and potential drawbacks.