Florida Supreme Court
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September 6, 2012
Phillip Morris USA v. James L. Douglas
In this wrongful death case, Mr. Douglas alleged that Philip Morris and other tobacco companies were liable for the death of his wife, Charlotte, a smoker who died of lung disease. The trial court let him rely on findings from an earlier class-action lawsuit about the liability of tobacco companies to smokers and their families. Mr. Douglas was awarded $2.5 million in compensation. The Second District Court of Appeal upheld the judgment and also certified the dispute over Mr. Douglas' use of the earlier findings to be a question of great public importance for this Court's consideration.