Recently, tobacco giants R.J. Reynolds and Philip Morris were each found to be 42.5% responsible for the death of Paul Pollari, who suffered from nicotine addiction that eventually led to his death in 1994.
The wrongful death lawsuit was filed in Florida as part of the Engle progeny cases. In these cases, plaintiffs argue that tobacco companies, such as R.J. Reynolds and Philip Morris, placed a dangerous, addictive product on the market and had conspired to hide the dangers of smoking. In the case of Mr. Pollari, it was proven that his addiction to nicotine led to his lung cancer diagnosis, despite protests from the defense.
During the trial, defense lawyers argued that the medical records included as evidence were not sufficient enough to prove that Mr. Pollari ever had lung cancer, even though his death certificate clearly stated he experienced cancer in his lungs that metastasized to his brain. It took only four hours for the jury to find R.J. Reynolds and Philip Morris responsible for his death, and award Mrs. Pollari $10 million, plus potential punitive damages.
Today, nicotine is known to be an addictive substance still found within tobacco products. Cigarettes alone cause more than 480,000 deaths each year, with cigars, chewing tobacco, and e-cigarettes affecting even more.
Recently, in California, the widow of a retired Navy Captain and Nuclear Inspector was awarded over $17 million in another wrongful death lawsuit. If you have lost a loved one due to tobacco use, you might be entitled to compensation from those responsible for your loss. Do not hesitate to contact an experienced attorney, today.