New and noteworthy verdicts and settlements from around the country, selected by VerdictSearch editors. Find out about the case most relevant to your practice, with complete details on awards and settlements; injuries claimed; experts, attorneys, insurers and judges involved; and more.
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Find out about the most important recent Florida cases, selected by VerdictSearch editors. Coverage includes Miami-Dade, Palm Beach and Pinellas counties.
Family: Philip Morris’ cigarettes led to smoker’s death
A jury has awarded the estate of a smoker more than $6.3 million in a products liability case. Lawyers for Mary Brown, whose husband Rayfield Brown passed away from lung cancer in 1995 at age 58, sued Philip Morris USA for products liability. Plaintiff’s counsel alleged the company’s products caused Rayfield to become addicted to nicotine - propelling a cigarette habit. The defense denied all allegations, arguing Rayfield chose to smoke, knew the risks, and even ignored warnings from high school athletic coaches about the dangers and addictiveness of smoking. But the jury found otherwise, finding that Rayfield was addicted to cigarettes made by Philip Morris USA, that his addiction caused his lung cancer and death, and awarded $6,375,277.
Brown v. Philip Morris USA
Senior citizen claimed Segway scooter crash caused multiple injuries
A jury and judge have awarded a senior citizen almost $800,000 in a Segway electric scooter collision case. Estelle Ross, 88, alleged a Segway driven by Massimilliano Pulciani struck her from behind while she walked on an Ocean Drive sidewalk in Miami Beach in November 2012. Ross claimed the crash fractured her left tibia and fibula; she later underwent several surgeries for leg treatment and for other complications. Defense counsel did not dispute Ross' injuries but argued her walking cane was in Pulciani's way, when he tried to pass her and lost control. But the jury found in favor of Ross, awarding her $294,683. The judge subsequently increased the award to $794,682 on a post-trial motion for additur.
Ross v. Pulciani
Woman seriously injured in truck, bike accident awarded $1.7 million
A pharmacist whose career trajectory was altered after allegedly being struck by a truck's trailer has received a $1.7 million damage award from a jury. Samantha Justyn, 25, claimed while riding her bike on Main Street in Jacksonville in 2012 the trailer of a pickup truck driven by Marvin D. Golden struck her as it made a right turn. Justyn was ultimately diagnosed with disc herniations at C2-3, C3-4 and C4-5, right leg bruises, abrasions and muscle damage, and neck and shoulder complications. The plaintiff said the injury forced her to switch from a retail pharmacy career to a less-physically-demanding hospital pharmacy career. The defense argued Justyn did not sustain any disc herniations, but the jury awarded her $1,728,500 in damages.
Justyn v. Valleycrest Landscape Maintenance Inc.
|$64,500,000||Matthews v. Semco Construction||Hillsborough Co.||Mar 27|
|$46,500,000||Ryan v. R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co.||Broward Co.||Apr 21|
|$23,187,134||Suarez v. Port Charlotte HMA, LLC||Charlotte Co.||Apr 24|
|$20,830,000||McCann Holdings Ltd v. SDC Communities Inc||Sarasota Co.||Mar 16|
|$19,200,000||Mendez v. Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services||Palm Beach Co.||Mar 17|
|$13,943,096||Cahan v. DD Real Estate Holdings Inc.||Brevard Co.||Mar 19|
|$11,600,000||Plummer v. Valentine Family Clinic||Volusia Co.||Apr 24|
|$6,375,277||Brown v. Philip Morris USA||Duval Co.||May 1|
|$6,000,000||Estate of Gray v. R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co.||Federal||Jan 29|
|$5,459,008||Simmons v. Collins||Gadsden Co.||May 1|