Pearson v. Philip Morris, Inc.

Buyers of Marlboro Lights cigarettes sued Philip Morris arguing that the company misrepresented whether Marlboro Lights had lower tar and nicotine levels between 1971 and 2000. The individuals asked for class action status to sue the company under the Oregon Unlawful Trade Practices Act. In this decision, the court of appeals overturned an earlier decision by the trial court. The appeals court said that it would be possible for the case to proceed as a class action because there are a number of common issues among the class members. The court also found that the trial court made a mistake in ruling that federal law preempted the plaintiffs’ claim. The appeals court sent the case back to the trial court asking the court to reassess whether a class action is the best method for deciding the case and, if not, if there are common issues that can be tried together in what is known as an “issue class.”


Pearson v. Philip Morris, Inc., 257 Or. App. 106 (2013).

  • United States
  • Jun 19, 2013
  • Court of Appeals, State of Oregon



  • Laura Grandin
  • Marilyn C. Pearson
  • Other similarly situated people


  • Philip Morris Companies, Inc. (aka Altria Group, Inc.)
  • Philip Morris, Inc. (aka Philip Morris USA, Inc.)

Legislation Cited

Related Documents

Type of Litigation

Tobacco Control Topics

Substantive Issues

Type of Tobacco Product