Philip Morris USA – Federal Appellate Court Reverses Nationwide “Lights” Class -Tobacco Litigation

NEW YORK–LAWFUEL –The U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit today reversed the certification of a nationwide class action of “lights” smokers.

“Philip Morris USA is pleased with today’s decision and believes the court came to the right conclusion in light of the overwhelming precedent denying class certification in smokers’ litigation,” said Murray Garnick, Altria Client Services senior vice president and associate general counsel, speaking on behalf of PM USA.

The court, among other things, stated the following in its opinion:

“Plaintiffs’ putative class action suffers from an insurmountable deficit of collective legal or factual questions.”
Federal law “is not a one-way ratchet, empowering a judge to conform the law to the proof.”

Neither of plaintiffs’ theories of injury “is plausible as a matter of law.”

Plaintiffs’ theory of distribution of damages “is an impermissible affront to defendants’ due process rights.”

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