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Author Topic: Florida Supreme Court Tosses Tobacco Settlement out, stating as 'Excessive'  (Read 3972 times)

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Offline Apple of Eris

People here do forget the courts also must protect the companies being sued a court cannot unfairly and unjustly destroy a public company with an award. This award would have forced companies into bankrupcy protection in some cases and then they would not see any money if they survived.

Actually a court award can force a company into bankruptcy or out of business. The court through its award of damages is under no obligation to look out for the best interests of the guilty party, if that were the case, punitive damages would never be awarded.Besides being driven into bankrputcy or out of business entirely happens all the time to smaller businesses who get sued.

And one of the reasons for the award in the first place was admissions by the companies own internal memoranda that they covered up for years information on how harmful cigarettes were, as well as actively targetd minors. Whether you agree or disagree that minors are incapable of making intelligent decisions or not, the law in the united states is that until 18 minors are in the custody of a parent or guardian. They are considered legally incapable of making certain decisions (hence the laws preventing minors from smoking, from drinking alcohol, driving until a certain age, wathcing porn, entering contracts, etc etc). Those were factors in the awarding of the punitive damages. And personally I feel the damages were not excessive at all.

Oh and as far as appealin to the SCOTUS, not a problem. The federal courts can take appeals from state courts, especially when said case deals with federal issues. Considering this case involves tobacco companies, most based in states outside of florida, selling cigarettes inside florida you are dealing with interstate commerce. The federal government has absolute authority granted by the constitution (specifically to congress btw) to regulate interstate commerce. :)

Offline National AcrobatTopic starter

I have a feeling the SCOTUS will refuse the case, for a couple of reasons.

One, the decision to make each plaintiff present a case, removing the class action, and two, if the companies go bankrupt, you and I, the american citizens, will have our tax dollars go towards either keeping them afloat to pay the damages, or to pay the damages outright since the companies will be under.

Neither is very appealing to me.

Don't be suprised if the SCOTUS refuses to hear the case.

Offline Apple of Eris

I wouldn't be suprised at all, especially since the court is lined with a majority of conservative judges.

then again, I wouldn't be suprised if they heard the case and modified florida's decision if only to avoid the thousands of individual cases that will be filed if it stands.

Offline Ajoxer

I think that, while tobbaco lovers should be free to smoke their cigarettes, the companies shouldn't be allowed to advertise. How hard is that? People all know what cigarettes are, they can choose their own kind- Just keep them from advertising.

But hey, what do I know?