Popular fitness influencer Brian “Liver King” Johnson was recently hit with a $25 million class-action lawsuit that claims the social media influencer and bodybuilder used deceptive marketing tactics to sell his products.
Johnson, 45, has long touted that his muscular physique was the result of eating raw meat, including raw animal organs, and abiding by a lifestyle referred to as the Nine Ancestral Tenets that he persuaded his customers to follow.
However, on Dec. 1, 2022, Johnson admitted to using steroids just days after emails between Johnson and another bodybuilder surfaced hormone that allegedly revealed that Johnson was taking $11,000 worth of Omnitrope, a growth per month, as well as a cocktail of other drugs. The emails were exposed in a YouTube documentary that aired in November 2022.
Johnson later apologized to his fans on social media.
Keep reading to learn more about this lawsuit and your options for pursuing legal action.
Details from the lawsuit
The class action lawsuit was filed against Johnson and his companies, the Fittest Ever, LLC, and Ancestral Supplements, LLC.
In the 25-page class-action lawsuit, filed in New York’s Supreme Court on behalf of Christopher Altomare and other health-conscious customers who copied the “Liver King’s” so-called health methods, Johnson is accused of “cult-like, extreme and implausible regimented lifestyle” in an effort for his fans and customers to buy his line of powders and pills.
The lawsuit, filed by New York-based Cotter Law Group, claims that Johnson pushed a “dangerous and life-threatening diet” to hawk his products. According to the case, the exposed emails between Johnson and another bodybuilder named “Vigorous Steve,” dating back to June 2021, alleged that Johnson planned to launch an elaborate advertising scheme to promote his two supplemental companies, the Fittest and Ancestral Supplements.
The suit claims that Johnson credited his physique as a result of working out, eating raw meat, and following his Nine Ancestral Tenets lifestyle instead of using steroids. According to the lawsuit, Johnson’s diet, based on the Nine Ancestral Tenets, included eating ground organs including the liver, spleen, pancreas, heart, and kidney, as well as “raw bull testicles, raw sweet bread, or raw heart.”
Until his Dec. 1 announcement, Johnson, who has 1.7 million Instagram followers, had denied using steroids.
The class-action lawsuit alleges that many of Johnson’s customers suffered from severe and other foodborne illnesses.
Can you submit a claim?
The lawsuit was filed on Dec. 28, 2022, and according to the most recent news reports, has only one plaintiff. However, the law firm representing Altomare stated it has heard from others who want to join the Liver King lawsuit and received additional inquiries about potentially other class-action lawsuits against Johnson and his companies.
The case is still in the courts, and there is no information currently on how to submit a claim for reimbursement.
Filing a lawsuit against Johnson in small claims court
You can either wait and see if a settlement is brought forth in the case against Johnson and his companies and file a claim for damages in said case. Another option is filing a suit in small claims court.
Small claims court is typically a quicker and easier route to file a claim. You have about 15 minutes to state your case to a small court judge. The process usually takes about 2 to 3 months.
Consider contacting an attorney for advice if you are uneasy about filing a lawsuit in small claims court or are unsure how the process works.
Filing a small claims case using getdispute.com
You likely won’t even need to go to trial, as about 85% of the cases are settled before trial. For a cost-effective solution, you can send a demand letter for $9 and generate court paperwork online for your small claims case for $89.
Go to getdispute.com to learn more about a cost-effective solution to beginning your small claims case.