Cases & Deals

R.J. Reynolds wins jury verdict in Rounds "Engle progeny" trial

Client(s) R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company

On January 26, 2016, following eleven days of trial, a jury in Daytona Beach, Florida returned a verdict in favor of Jones Day client R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company in a personal injury action. The plaintiff in Rounds, the widow of deceased a former smoker, claimed that her late husband was a member of the class decertified by the Florida Supreme Court in Engle v. Liggett Group, Inc., 945 So. 2d 1246 (Fla. 2006) and therefore entitled to the benefit of certain generalized findings made by a jury in the course of the Engle class action trial. Plaintiff asserted claims for strict liability, negligence, fraudulent concealment, and conspiracy. She sought compensatory damages for herself and three daughters as well as punitive damages. After just over two hours of deliberations, the jury returned a complete defense verdict, finding that Mr. Rounds was not a member of the decertified Engle class.

Rounds ex rel. Rounds v. R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co. (Case No. 2013-32607-CICI, Fla. 7th Cir., Volusia Cty.)