Rite Aid will shutter one of its Toms River locations on September 25, according to a company spokesperson. The affected store, situated at 1726 Route 37 East near Cornell Avenue, is part of the company's response to ongoing financial strain caused by lawsuits.
The closure of the Toms River store, the company explained, results from a routine assessment of its operations. According to the spokesperson, the decision is influenced by several factors, including business strategy, lease and rent considerations, local business conditions, and store performance. The company intends to facilitate a seamless transition for customers, transferring prescriptions to nearby Rite Aid or alternative pharmacies, and aims to relocate affected employees to other Rite Aid branches if feasible.
The pharmacy chain, headquartered in Philadelphia, had previously signaled its intent to file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in New Jersey, with plans to close more than 400 of its 2,200 stores nationwide, as reported by The Wall Street Journal in August.
Rite Aid is grappling with over 1,000 lawsuits related to its involvement in opioid treatments, a matter set to be adjudicated in an Ohio court, along with additional legal challenges in various states, as highlighted in an MSN report.
To date, no mass layoff notices have been filed with the New Jersey Department of Labor, and there has been no confirmation regarding the status of other Rite Aid locations in Toms River or Ocean County.
Rite Aid currently operates 105 stores in New Jersey, including 17 in Ocean County. Recently, the company also announced the closure of its Morristown store.