Brannock & Humphries Reinstates Jury’s Million-Dollar Verdict In Tobacco Appeal
Today, at Brannock & Humphries’ urging, the Fourth District Court of Appeal issued an opinion reversing the reduction of a $1 million verdict against cigarette manufacturer Philip Morris.
At trial, the plaintiff had prevailed on all his counts, including counts for fraudulent concealment and conspiracy. But, the trial court later reduced the jury’s awarded damages—from $1 million to $157,000—so they would reflect the plaintiff’s comparative fault.
After the Fourth District affirmed the trial court, Brannock & Humphries petitioned the Florida Supreme Court to accept jurisdiction. The Florida Supreme Court, having held in a related case that the comparative fault statute does not apply to intentional torts like fraud, accepted jurisdiction and quashed the Fourth District’s affirmance of the reduced verdict. On remand, the Fourth District reinstated the jury’s full $1 million award.
The opinion can be found here.