Tobacco News:

Lawsuits: Engle
RSS: http://tobacco.org/newsfeed/lawsuit/engle.rss
Choose type:
Search Term(s):
[Headlines Only] [Top Stories Only]
Engle
[1 - 15 of 1,116] » Next Page
Categories
· Lawsuits
USA, by State
· Florida
Lawsuits
· Engle
Organizations
· Reynolds American

$27 Million Verdict Against R.J. Reynolds for Cancer Victim 

* First payouts by big tobacco expected to be made today
Jump to full article: JD Supra, LLC , 2012-04-30

Categories
· Lawsuits
· Obit
USA, by State
· Florida
Lawsuits
· Engle

Tobacco Cos. Dispute Cause Of Death As Engle Trial Opens ($$) 

Jump to full article: Law360, 2012-04-18
Author: Steven Melendez

Intro:

Attorneys sparred before a Florida state jury Tuesday over whether decades of cigarette smoking caused a man's illness and death, in a so-called Engle progeny case his widow brought against tobacco companies including R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co. and Philip Morris USA Inc.

Attorneys representing cigarette makers Lorillard Tobacco Co., Liggett Group LLC, R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co. and Philip Morris USA Inc. said in opening arguments Monday that they don't deny that their products can be addictive and unhealthy.

But they did deny allegations that Johnnie Calloway,...

Jump to full article »

Categories
· Lawsuits
USA, by State
· Florida
Lawsuits
· Engle
Organizations
· Reynolds American

Court snuffs out $79.2 million award in tobacco case  

Jump to full article: Naples (FL) Daily News, 2012-04-09

Categories
· Lawsuits
· Court Documents
USA, by State
· Florida
Lawsuits
· Engle
Organizations
· Altria/Philip Morris
· Reynolds American

FRAZIER v. RJR, PHILIP MORRIS 

An Appeal from the Circuit Court for Miami-Dade County, John Schlesinger, Judge.
Jump to full article: Third District Court of Appeal (FL), 2012-04-11

Intro:

In this Engle-progeny1 case, the jury returned a special interrogatory verdict in favor of the tobacco company defendants, appellees here, based on the affirmative defense that the plaintiff’s, Ms. Frazier’s, lawsuit was barred by the four-year statute of limitations, section 95.11(3), Florida Statutes (1994). Ms. Frazier has appealed the denial of her motions for directed verdict and new trial regarding the limitations issue. Appellees Philip Morris and R.J. Reynolds have cross-appealed the circuit court’s ruling granting preclusive effect to certain findings by the Supreme Court of Florida in Engle and the trial court’s refusal to instruct the jury regarding the twelve-year statute of repose applicable to fraud claims, section 95.031(2)(a), Florida Statutes (1994).

In the direct appeal, we reverse and remand the case for a new trial for two independently sufficient reasons. First, there was no competent record evidence that “the accumulated effects of the substance [had] manifest[ed] in a way which supplie[d to Ms. Frazier] some evidence of the causal relationship to the manufactured product”2 before the undisputed limitations bar date of May 5, 1990. For this reason, Ms. Frazier’s motion for a directed verdict on the statute of limitations issue should have been granted.

Second, Ms. Frazier made and preserved meritorious objections to the court’s adoption of the jury instruction and special interrogatory verdict question submitted by the appellees on the statute of limitations defense. Although this issue becomes moot on the basis of our ruling on the direction of a verdict, we conclude that Ms. Frazier’s motion for a new trial was well taken on this issue as well.

In the cross appeal, we affirm the trial court’s rulings on both issues.

Jump to full article »

Categories
· Lawsuits
· Court Documents
USA, by State
· Florida
Lawsuits
· Engle
Organizations
· Reynolds American

RJR v. WEBB (PDF) 

Jump to full article: Florida's First District Court of Appeal , 2012-04-09

Intro:

The amount of the compensatory damages suggests an award that is the product of passion, an emotional response to testimony regarding difficulties Ms. Webb and her father faced and overcame before cancer befell him, rather than evidence of his illness, subsequent death, and the noneconomic consequences of the death itself. . . .

Although not determinative, the fact that the jury awarded double the amount of compensatory damages requested by Ms. Webb’s counsel and assigned to Mr. Horner half of the percentage of fault her counsel acknowledged during closing argument suggests the jury was influenced by prejudice or passion. While a “‘jury might properly award damages equal to or in excess of those requested by counsel in closing argument,’ . . . it is common practice for attorneys to suggest damages well in excess of the amount that could be sustained under the facts in the case.” (“A verdict is not per se excessive because the jury awards the full amount of damages suggested by counsel for the prevailing party, but we would be exceedingly naive should we fail to recognize that as a matter of practice the advocate usually suggests to the jury a figure for damages substantially in excess of the amount that is clearly supportable by the evidence and likewise in excess of the amount which he deems to be supportable in point of law should the jury happen to return a verdict approaching the amount suggested.”). Certainly the compassion Mr. Horner exhibited during his lifetime, and Ms. Webb’s deafness and devotion both to him and her first born, could inspire sympathy and admiration. In the circumstances, however, the compensatory damages award is more than the evidence at trial reasonably supports and “shocks the judicial conscience.” The trial court abused its discretion when it denied RJR’s motion for remittitur or new trial.

Because the award of compensatory damages must be vacated, we also vacate the award of punitive damages. See Engle, 945 So. 2d at 1265 (“‘[C]ourts must ensure that the measure of punishment is both reasonable and proportionate to the amount of harm to the plaintiff and to the general damages recovered.’ Thus, the amount of compensatory damages must be determined in advance of a determination of the amount of punitive damages awardable, if any, so that the relationship between the two may be reviewed for reasonableness.” . . .

V.

We reverse both the compensatory and the punitive damage awards and remand the case with directions that the trial court grant the motion for remittitur or order a new trial on damages only. We affirm the judgment in all other respects.

Jump to full article »

Categories
· Lawsuits
· Lung Cancer
USA, by State
· Florida
Lawsuits
· Engle
Organizations
· Reynolds American

Fla. Appeals Court Stubs $79M RJR Lung Cancer Verdict ($$) 

Jump to full article: Law360, 2012-04-09

Categories
· Lawsuits
USA, by State
· Florida
Lawsuits
· Engle
Organizations
· Reynolds American

Court overturns $79.2 million award in tobacco case  

Jump to full article: Ft. Myers (FL) News-Press, 2012-04-10

Categories
· Lawsuits
· Obit
USA, by State
· Florida
Lawsuits
· Engle
Organizations
· Reynolds American

Panel Rejects $79.2 Million Award in Tobacco Death Lawsuit  

Appeals court returns case to circuit court to determine reduced damages against R.J. Reynolds in smoker's death.
Jump to full article: Lakeland (FL) Ledger, 2012-04-10

Categories
· Lawsuits
USA, by State
· Florida
Lawsuits
· Engle
Organizations
· Reynolds American

Appeals court overturns verdict against Reynolds Tobacco 

Jump to full article: Winston-Salem (NC) Journal, 2012-04-10
Author: Richard Craver

Intro:

A state appeals court in Florida vacated Monday a $79.2 million personal injury verdict against R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co. -- the largest award against Reynolds in the "Engle" progeny cases.

The wrongful-death lawsuit was brought by Diane Webb, the 54-year-old daughter of James Horner, who died from lung cancer in March 1996 at age 78. The lawsuit accused Reynolds of fraud by concealment, conspiracy to commit fraud by concealment and negligence.

The First District Court of Appeal said that while it agreed Reynolds holds liability in Horner's death, it found that the Levy County jury's awards were excessive. The jury had awarded $7.2 million in compensatory damages and $72 million in punitive damages.

Essentially, the court ruled the jury awarded damages based more on compassion for Webb and Horner's life stories than on legal liability.

As a result, Reynolds could receive a new trial regarding damages.

Jump to full article »

Categories
· Lawsuits
· Court Documents
USA, by State
· Florida
Lawsuits
· Engle
Organizations
· Altria/Philip Morris
· Reynolds American
· Liggett

TOBACCO v. DOUGLAS (PDF) 

Jump to full article: Amazon Web Services / Simple Storage Service (Amazon S3) , 2012-03-30

Intro:

Philip Morris USA, Inc., R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company, and Liggett Group, LLC (the Tobacco Companies), challenge the final judgment entered after jury trial which awarded James L. Douglas, as the personal representative of the Estate of Charlotte M. Douglas, $2.5 million as damages on claims based on Mrs. Douglas' smoking-related death.1 . . .

we now turn our attention to the facts and record before us. We agree with the Fourth District's conclusions that the Florida Supreme Court's language in Engle III clearly states that the jury findings in that case are binding on future claims as to the issues of the Tobacco Companies' conduct. The supreme court described those findings as "common issues relating exclusively to the defendants' conduct and the general health effects of smoking." The supreme court then concluded that "[c]lass members can choose to initiate individual damages actions and [that] the Phase I common core findings . . . will have res judicata effect in those trials."

We also agree with the Fourth District in concluding that to require post- Engle III plaintiffs to relitigate issues related to the Tobacco Companies' conduct and the general health effects of smoking would undercut the intent of the Florida Supreme Court's Engle III decision. As such, like the Fourth District, we reject the Tobacco Companies' argument that post-Engle III plaintiffs should be required to prove specific defects existing in specific cigarettes.

We further note that we do not read the Fourth District's opinion in Brown to require a bifurcated trial court proceeding but rather only to require that the jury be instructed on legal causation separately for the consideration of class membership and then again for consideration of the cause of action.

Because the Engle Phase I findings are accepted as to the conduct of the Tobacco Companies and the health effects of smoking, to prevail on the theory of strict liability in the instant case, Mr. Douglas needed only to prove legal causation and damages on his claims. The verdict form clearly posed the question of legal causation to the jury, and the jury made a finding that Mrs. Douglas' diseases were legally caused by her smoking cigarettes manufactured by the Tobacco Companies. That coupled with the Phase I finding that the cigarettes were "defective and unreasonably dangerous" amounts to strict liability. We therefore affirm the final judgment based on a theory of strict liability.

Finally, the Tobacco Companies also argue that the Eleventh Circuit in its Brown case concluded that to allow res judicata to apply to the Phase I findings would be a violation of their due process rights guaranteed by the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution. This argument was rejected by both the First District in Martin and the Fourth District in Brown. Furthermore, this position more recently has been rejected by the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida in Waggoner v. R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co. We too reject this argument.

We do agree, however, that the issue is one that will be applicable to the many individual class member cases now being considered by the trial courts of this state. Accordingly, pursuant to Florida Rule of Appellate Procedure 9.030(a)(2)(A)(v) and article 5, section 3 of the Florida Constitution, we certify the following question as being one of great public importance:

DOES ACCEPTING AS RES JUDICATA THE EIGHT PHASE I FINDINGS APPROVED IN ENGLE V. LIGGETT GROUP, INC., 945 SO. 2D 1246 (FLA. 2006), VIOLATE THE TOBACCO COMPANIES' DUE PROCESS RIGHTS GUARANTEED BY THE FOURTEENTH AMENDMENT OF THE UNITED STATES CONSTITUTION?

Affirmed; question certified.

Jump to full article »

Categories
· Lawsuits
USA, by State
· Florida
Lawsuits
· Engle
Organizations
· Altria/Philip Morris
· Reynolds American

Fla. High Court Asked To Weigh In On Engle Progeny ($$) 

Jump to full article: Law360, 2012-04-02

Categories
· Lawsuits
Lawsuits
· Engle
Organizations
· Scotus

US Supreme Court denies certiorari for Engle litigation ($$) 

Jump to full article: Wisconsin Law Journal , 2012-04-02
Author: Correy Stephenson Lawyers Weekly USA

Intro:

In between hours of oral argument over the federal health care legislation, the justices took the time to deny certiorari in the first of the Florida tobacco suits to reach the U.S. Supreme Court. Florida’s individual tobacco suits, known as the Engle litigation, involve separate trials held to determine if a plaintiff was addicted to cigarettes ... . . .

Steve Callahan, a spokesperson for Philip Morris, agreed.

“The failure to grant review is not a decision on the merits of the case,” he said in a statement. “We continue to believe that we have strong due process challenges to the litigation and will continue to raise those challenges in Florida state and federal courts. ”

But Edward L. Sweda, Jr., a senior attorney for the Tobacco Products Liability Project at Northeastern University School of Law in Boston, said he was “ecstatic” about the justices’ decision to pass on the cases.

“At long last, Reynolds and the other major tobacco companies will be held accountable for their massive and reprehensible misconduct that harmed thousands of Florida smokers,” Sweda said in a statement.

Jump to full article »

Categories
· Lawsuits
USA, by State
· Florida
Lawsuits
· Engle
Organizations
· Scotus

Tobacco Companies Get Smoked in Court  

Jump to full article: JD Supra, LLC , 2012-04-03

Categories
· Lawsuits
USA, by State
· Florida
Lawsuits
· Engle
Organizations
· Reynolds American

Ratzan Law Group Announces Plaintiff Emmon Smith Was Awarded $10 Million Verdict in Compensatory Damages and $20 Million in Punitive Damages in Trial Against R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company 

Jump to full article: Business Wire, 2012-03-29

Categories
· Lawsuits
· Court Documents
USA, by State
· Florida
Lawsuits
· Engle
Organizations
· Altria/Philip Morris

PHILIP MORRIS USA, INC. v. DOUGLAS - Opinion filed March 30, 2012. 

Jump to full article: Leagle, 2012-03-30

Intro:

We agree with the Fourth District's conclusions that the Florida Supreme Court's language in Engle III clearly states that the jury findings in that case are binding on future claims as to the issues of the Tobacco Companies' conduct. The supreme court described those findings as "common issues relating exclusively to the defendants' conduct and the general health effects of smoking." Engle III, 945 So. 2d at 1256. The supreme court then concluded that "[c]lass members can choose to initiate individual damages actions and [that] the Phase I common core findings . . . will have res judicata effect in those trials." Id. at 1269.

We also agree with the Fourth District in concluding that to require post-Engle III plaintiffs to relitigate issues related to the Tobacco Companies' conduct and the general health effects of smoking would undercut the intent of the Florida Supreme Court's Engle III decision. As such, like the Fourth District, we reject the Tobacco Companies' argument that post-Engle III plaintiffs should be required to prove specific defects existing in specific cigarettes.

We further note that we do not read the Fourth District's opinion in Brown to require a bifurcated trial court proceeding but rather only to require that the jury be instructed on legal causation separately for the consideration of class membership and then again for consideration of the cause of action.

Because the Engle Phase I findings are accepted as to the conduct of the Tobacco Companies and the health effects of smoking, to prevail on the theory of strict liability in the instant case, Mr. Douglas needed only to prove legal causation and damages on his claims. The verdict form clearly posed the question of legal causation to the jury, and the jury made a finding that Mrs. Douglas' diseases were legally caused by her smoking cigarettes manufactured by the Tobacco Companies. That coupled with the Phase I finding that the cigarettes were "defective and unreasonably dangerous" amounts to strict liability. We therefore affirm the final judgment based on a theory of strict liability.8

Finally, the Tobacco Companies also argue that the Eleventh Circuit in its Brown case concluded that to allow res judicata to apply to the Phase I findings would be a violation of their due process rights guaranteed by the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution. This argument was rejected by both the First District in Martin and the Fourth District in Brown. Furthermore, this position more recently has been rejected by the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida in Waggoner v. R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co., No. 3:09-cv-10367-J-37JBT, 2011 WL 6371882 (M.D. Fla. Dec. 20, 2011). We too reject this argument.

We do agree, however, that the issue is one that will be applicable to the many individual class member cases now being considered by the trial courts of this state. Accordingly, pursuant to Florida Rule of Appellate Procedure 9.030(a)(2)(A)(v) and article 5, section 3 of the Florida Constitution, we certify the following question as being one of great public importance:

DOES ACCEPTING AS RES JUDICATA THE EIGHT PHASE I FINDINGS APPROVED IN ENGLE V. LIGGETT GROUP, INC., 945 SO. 2D 1246 (FLA. 2006), VIOLATE THE TOBACCO COMPANIES' DUE PROCESS RIGHTS GUARANTEED BY THE FOURTEENTH AMENDMENT OF THE UNITED STATES CONSTITUTION?

Affirmed; question certified.

Jump to full article »

Engle
[1 - 15 of 1,116] » Next Page