Minnesota Court Dismisses Class Action Suit Against PM USA

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Minnesota Court Dismisses Class Action Suit Against PM USA

05/30/2012

RICHMOND, Va. -- A Minnesota Supreme Court ruling has brought a class action suit against Philip Morris USA (PM USA) to an end.

The class action, Curtis v. Philip Morris Inc., was filed by smokers who sought refunds for "light" cigarettes they purchased. However, the Minnesota Supreme Court found that the class' claims under the state consumer protection law were barred by the Tobacco Settlement Agreement signed by the Minnesota attorney general and PM USA in 1998.

"The Minnesota Supreme Court properly dismissed this case as barred by the Tobacco Settlement Agreement," said Murray Garnick, Altria Client Services senior vice president and associate general counsel, speaking on behalf of PM USA. "The Minnesota Supreme Court now joins with 14 courts in 15 'lights' cases which have rejected these claims on a variety of legal and factual grounds."

The class action suit was filed more than 10 years ago and purported to represent smokers worldwide who had purchased Marlboro Lights in Minnesota between 1971 and 2004.