Florida Woman Is Awarded $15 Million In Tobacco Company Lawsuit
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Product Liability

Product Liability

 

We have all grown up seeing the commercials of how cool it looks to smoke a cigarette. With all of the no smoking campaigns and research behind the manufacturing of cigarettes, we now also know the dangers of tobacco. Though these dangers are a known fact to us, there are still so many tobacco users in the US which keep the tobacco industries in high business. If or a loved one have a been the victim of a manufacturer’s product, call a Fort Lauderdale Product Liability Lawyer.

For decades, the Department of Justice has attempted to hold these tobacco companies liable for the tragedies that their products have caused to many individuals. The United States Department of Justice, also known as the DOJ, sued several major tobacco companies for fraudulent and unlawful conduct and reimbursement of tobacco-related medical expenses in 1999. The DOJ’s claims were dismissed by the circuit court judge who allowed the DOJ to bring its claim under the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO).

Product Liability Lawyer In Fort Lauderdale

The final outcome came on August 17, 2006, when Judge Kessler issued a 1,683-page opinion that finally held the tobacco companies liable for violating RICO. They were said to have fraudulently covered up the health risks associated with smoking and for marketing their products to children. The Final Proposed Findings of Fact states that substantial evidence shows that the defendants engaged in and executed a 50-year scheme to   “As set forth in these Final Proposed Findings of Fact, substantial evidence establishes that Defendants have engaged in and executed – and continue to engage in and execute – a massive 50-year scheme to defraud the public, including consumers of cigarettes, in violation of RICO.”

After the loss of a loved one and a 4-week trial, the jury in the case of Engle v. R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co. awarded Mary Lima, 83, a total of $15 million in damages. The widow lost her husband due to illnesses related to years of cigarette smoking. $3 million was awarded for compensatory damages from the loss of her husband and $12 million in punitive damages against R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co. Her husband smoked for over 40 years inhaling up to 2 packs a day until he died in 1993 at the age of 60.

Dangers of Tobacco

Here are some researched facts of the dangers of tobacco use.

  • Smoking is linked to slowed growth of lung function in teens. They cannot run as fast or far. Smokers suffer from shortness of breath three times more than nonsmokers.
  • Some of the toxins found in cigarette smoke are found in items such as rat poison, toilet cleaners, and formaldehyde, which is used to preserve dead animals.
  • Every year, secondhand smoke causes more than 202,000 asthma episodes and 790,000 doctor visits due to ear infections.
  • Smoking is the single largest cause of preventable disease and death in the United States.
  • More deaths are caused each year by tobacco use than by HIV, illegal drug use, alcohol use, motor vehicle injuries, suicides, and murders combined.
  • Nicotine is a drug found naturally in tobacco. It’s as addictive as heroin and cocaine.

If you or a loved one want to discuss your options in your possible suit, call The Ben Law Firm today. Speak to an experienced attorney that is here to guide you every step of the way.

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