Tuesday, February 7, 2006

Philip Morris to (Surprise!) Appeal $79.5 Million Punitives Verdict

(Here's my original post with some excerpts from the opinion.)

The AP story quotes torts prof Carl Tobias (Richmond) as suggesting that the Supremes will take the case.  I'm less certain of that, unless it's just to remand with directions to read State Farm, real slowly and carefully this time.

(I kid, I kid.  The Oregon court did read State Farm and Gore and so on, and just concluded that the facts here supported a huge ratio of punitives to actuals ("Philip Morris's conduct here was extraordinarily reprehensible, by any measure of which we are aware.").  If the Supremes do take it, it'll be an interesting test of just how definitive that single-digit-multiplier is.)

http://lawprofessors.typepad.com/tortsprof/2006/02/philip_morris_t.html

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