Mealey's Tobacco

  • December 7, 2017

    Man Says Asbestos Law Doesn’t Require Medical Opinion On ‘Smoker’ Status

    COLUMBUS, Ohio — Requiring every asbestos lung cancer plaintiff who ever smoked tobacco to provide a medical expert opinion that the person doesn’t qualify as a “smoker” would produce absurd results, burden nonsmokers and is at odds with a decade of precedent and the law’s intent, a man told the Ohio Supreme Court Dec. 6 (Bobby Turner, et al. v. Union Carbide Corp., et al., No. 17-0004, Ohio Sup.).

  • December 7, 2017

    Engle Progeny Plaintiff Files Notice Of Appeal Following Defense Verdict

    WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. — Following a defense verdict in an Engle progeny trial, a woman who sued on behalf of her deceased husband filed a notice of appeal with Florida’s Fourth Appellate District Court on Dec. 4, saying the trial court erred in denying her motion for a new trial (Doris E. Shadd v. R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co., 4D17-3735, Fla. App., 4th Dist.).

  • December 5, 2017

    Florida Supreme Court Denies Petition For Review In Engle Progeny Suit

    TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — The Florida Supreme Court on Dec. 4, without explanation, denied an Engle progeny plaintiff’s petition for review in appealing a lower court’s decision to vacate a $16.8 million verdict and grant a new trial in a tobacco suit (Cynthia Robinson v. R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co., No. SC17-1130, Fla. Sup., 2017 Fla. LEXIS 2437).

  • December 1, 2017

    Law Firms Fight Back Against $9 Million Engle Suits Sanction

    JACKSONVILLE, Fla. —The law firms accused of filing several frivolous Engle progeny actions in Florida state and federal courts and ordered to pay a $9 million sanction filed a motion on Nov. 11 to amend the order and reduce the amount of the sanctions (In Re:  Engle Cases, No. 3:09-cv-10000, M.D. Fla.).

  • December 1, 2017

    Florida Jury Awards $1.2 Million To Widow Of Deceased Smoker

    DELAND, Fla. — A Florida jury on Nov. 20 found that a tobacco company was negligent and that its cigarettes were defectively designed and awarded $1.2 million to the widow of a man who developed lung cancer after years of smoking (Kathleen Marie Quackenbush v.  R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co., No. 2007-12188-CIDL, Fla. 7th Jud. Cir., Volusia Co.).

  • November 27, 2017

    Florida Judge Declares Mistrial In Engle Progeny Suit Against R.J. Reynolds

    WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. — A jury in an Engle progeny suit was unable to come to a verdict in Florida state court and a mistrial was granted in a tobacco suit in which a woman claimed that her mother’s lung cancer and death were caused by her addiction to cigarettes made by R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co. (Julie Adamson v. R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co., No. 2016CA008532, Fla. 15th Jud. Cir., Palm Beach Co.). VIDEO FROM THE TRIAL IS AVAILABLE.

  • November 14, 2017

    Florida Appeals Panel Affirms $12 Million Verdict In Tobacco Suit

    LAKELAND, Fla. — Without an explanation, a panel of the Second District Florida Court of Appeal on Nov. 8 affirmed a $12 million verdict, but certified a conflict with another Florida appellate court over the tobacco company’s arguments on comparative fault (R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company v. George J. Dion, No. 2d16-3632, Fla. App., 2nd Dist., 2017 Fla. App. LEXIS 16433).

  • November 10, 2017

    R.J. Reynolds Seeks Supreme Court Review of $11.5 Million Tobacco Verdict

    WASHINGTON, D.C. — R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co. on Nov. 7 filed petition for writ of certiorari with the U.S. Supreme Court, seeking a review of an $11.5 million verdict against the company in an Engle progeny suit and claiming that the 1965 Federal Cigarette Labeling and Advertising Act, 15 U.S.C 1331-1341, preempts the findings of the Phase I Engle proceedings (R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co. v. Florence Monroe, No. 17-675, U.S. Sup.).

  • November 9, 2017

    Florida Appeals Panel Vacates $10.5 Million Verdict In Tobacco Suit

    WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. — A panel of the Fourth District of the Florida Court of Appeal on Nov. 8 found that a U.S. surgeon general’s report that was admitted to the jury during an Engle progeny suit was hearsay and should not have been admitted as evidence and remanded the suit to the trial court for a new trial (R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co., et al. v. John McCoy, No. 4D16-259, Fla. App. 4th Dist.).

  • November 9, 2017

    R.J. Reynolds Seeks Supreme Court Review Of $13 Million Tobacco Verdict

    WASHINGTON, D.C. — R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co. on Oct. 30 filed a petition for writ of certiorari over a $13 million verdict in an Engle progeny suit, saying the court should review the case because “relieving plaintiffs of the burden of establishing essential elements of their tort claims violates due process” (R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co. v. Vivian Turner, No. 17-638, U.S. Sup., 2017 U.S. S. Ct. Briefs LEXIS 4226).

  • November 9, 2017

    Florida Appeals Panel Vacates $10.5 Million In Tobacco Suit

    WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. — A panel of the Fourth District of the Florida Court of Appeals on Nov. 8 found that the U.S. Surgeon’s report was hearsay and should not have been admitted to evidence and remanded the suit to the trial court for a new trial (R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co., et al. v. John McCoy, No. 4D16-259, Fla. App. 4th Dist.).

  • November 8, 2017

    Asbestos Law Mandates Medical Expert Weigh In On ‘Smoker’ Status, Company Says

    COLUMBUS, Ohio — The law clearly requires those bringing asbestos-related lung cancer claims to submit a medical expert’s opinion regarding whether the plaintiff qualifies as a smoker of tobacco products, language intended to prioritize asbestos lung cancer claims and insulate untrained judges from having to translate medical records, a company told the Ohio Supreme Court on Nov. 7 (Bobby Turner, et al. v. Union Carbide Corp., et al., No. 17-0004, Ohio Sup.).

  • November 6, 2017

    Florida Appeals Panel Reverses Summary Judgment In Tobacco Lawsuit

    DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. — A panel of Florida’s Fifth District Court of Appeals on Nov. 3 reversed a decision from a trial court to grant summary judgment to tobacco companies in an Engle progeny suit and ordered that an evidentiary hearing be held on whether the suit was filed before the statute of limitations expired (Desmond Mansfield v. R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co., et al., No 5D16-1826, Fla. App. 5th Dist.).

  • November 6, 2017

    Florida Appeals Panel Orders Tobacco Companies To Pay Attorney Fees

    WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. — A panel of the Fourth District Florida Court of Appeal on Oct. 25 reversed a trial court’s order that denied an Engle progeny plaintiff’s motion for attorney fees because the plaintiff was entitled to the fees under Florida law governing attorney fees (John McCoy v. R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co., et al., No. 4D16-1378, Fla. App., 4th Dist., 2017 Fla. App. LEXIS 15380).

  • November 3, 2017

    Florida Jury Awards Widower More Than $100,000 In Tobacco Lawsuit

    JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — A Florida jury on Nov. 2 awarded the widower of a woman who died of laryngeal cancer $131,371 in damages in an Engle progeny suit after finding that her addiction to cigarettes made by Philip Morris USA Inc. was the cause of her cancer and death (Robert Douglas v. Philip Morris USA Inc., No. 2008-CA-000386, Fla. 4th Jud. Cir., Duval Co.). VIDEO FROM THE TRIAL IS AVAILABLE.

  • October 31, 2017

    Florida Jury Awards Widow Of Smoker $36 Million In Tobacco Suit

    MELBOURNE, Fla. — A jury in Florida on Oct. 20 awarded a total of $36 million in damages in an Engle progeny suit in which a widow claimed that her husband was addicted to cigarettes made by two tobacco companies and that the addiction led to his lung cancer and death (Fontaine Wallace v. Philip Morris Inc., et al., No. 2014-CA-052862, Fla. 18th Jud. Cir. Brevard Co.). VIDEO FROM THE TRIAL IS AVAILABLE.

  • October 26, 2017

    Florida Appeals Panel Affirms $35 Million Verdict In Tobacco Trial

    MIAMI — A panel of the Third District Florida Court of Appeal on Oct. 18 affirmed a $35 million verdict in an Engle progeny suit after finding that the trial court did not err in denying the tobacco companies’ motion for a new trial based on improper comments during closing arguments and that it did not err in allowing the plaintiff to introduce evidence on the number of deaths smoking has caused (Philip Morris USA Inc., et al. v. Roland Ledoux, No. 3D16-675, Fla. App., 3rd Dist., 2017 Fla. App. LEXIS 14753).

  • October 25, 2017

    Patent Board Institutes Review Of Electronic Cigarette Patent

    ALEXANDRIA, Va. — In an Oct. 23 ruling, the Patent Trial and Appeal Board announced that it will review the patentability of seven claims of an electronic cigarette patent but denied institution with regard to five others (R.J. Reynolds Vapor Co. v. Fontem Holdings 1 BV, No. IPR2017-01120, PTAB).

  • October 24, 2017

    Companies Want Daubert As Florida Law, Every Exposure Asbestos Testimony Rejected

    TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — Two companies on Oct. 20 defended a ruling rejecting an $8 million judgment, telling the Florida Supreme Court that the state’s Legislature is free to adopt the Daubert standard and that expert testimony that every exposure to asbestos leads to mesothelioma fails regardless of which standard the court applies (Richard DeLisle v. Crane Co., et al., No. SC16-2182, Fla. Sup.).

  • October 20, 2017

    2 Law Firms Ordered To Pay $9.1 Million For Frivolous Engle Progeny Suits

    JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — A panel of judges in the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida on Oct. 18 ordered two law firms pay $9.1 million in sanctions for filing 1,250 frivolous Engle progeny complaints (In Re:  Engle Cases, No. 3:09-cv-10000, M.D. Fla., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 172678).