TortsProf Blog

Editor: Christopher J. Robinette
Widener Commonwealth Law School

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Two Upcoming BNA Conferences: Punitive Damages and the Consumer Product Safety Act

BNA has two upcoming conferences of interest to blog readers:

1.   Wed., Oct. 15th, The New Course of Punitive Damages After Exxon and Philip Morris (Audio Conference).   

Punitive Damage Calculations - the Supreme Court in recent terms has been addressing the issue of how much is too much in the area of punitive damages. Earlier, the court took up the issue of punitive damages in the area of damages sought by a smoker’s widow from a cigarette company. In June, the court reduced the damage award in the Exxon Valdez oil spill litigation. Although it was a maritime law case, the opinion had some interesting language about punitive damages calculations.  Key program topics:  Examination of what the 2007 decision in Philip Morris USA v. Williams means and how that issue has played out in the courts since the decision.  Review of what Exxon Shipping Co. v. Baker decided and its implications beyond maritime cases. How the U.S. Supreme Court views empirical studies cited in briefs. What is at issue in the return of the Philip Morris case to the U.S. Supreme Court?  What might be the next punitive damage issue the Court could confront?  Speakers include Bob Peck of the Center for Constitutional Litigation and Victor Schwartz of Shook, Hardy & Bacon.

2.  Thurs, Oct. 30th, The New Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act of 2008 (Live Conference, DC). 

Following a year and a half of unprecedented numbers of consumer product recalls, Congress recently passed and the President signed into law the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act of 2008 . . . The program will outline: the rapid rollout of new federal standards on lead and phtalates; mandatory third-party testing of children's products; the adoption of new regulatory standards and mandatory rules; the role of states in enforcing product safety; product specific provisions.  Speakers include Nancy Nord, Acting Chair of the CPSC, Eric Rubel, Arnold & Porter; and Peter Winik, Latham & Watkins. 


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