TITLE

Florida Appeals Court Tosses Out $145B Tobacco Damages Award

AUTHOR(S)
Sigo, Shelly
PUB. DATE
May 2003
SOURCE
Bond Buyer;5/22/2003, Vol. 344 Issue 31641, p3
SOURCE TYPE
Trade Publication
DOC. TYPE
Article
ABSTRACT
Florida's Third District Court of Appeals reversed a lower court's 145 billion dollar jury award of punitive damages against the top tobacco companies of the U.S., saying that the suit should never have received class action certification.The case was originally known as R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co. v. Engle and under appeal as Liggett Group Inc. v. Engle. The ruling said that certification of the class was improper because individuals have varying complaints, and that the punitive award was also precluded by the states' Master Settlement Agreement in 1998 with tobacco companies that resolved all claims for punitive damages. The major rating agencies downgraded the nearly 19 billion dollar in outstanding municipal debt secured by tobacco settlement payments.
ACCESSION #
9913102

 

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