Florida Supreme Court
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September 6, 2012
Phillip Morris USA v. James L. Douglas
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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.