Price v. Philip Morris, Inc.

An Illinois court revived a class action lawsuit alleging that tobacco company advertising using the terms “light” and “low tar” constituted fraud. A trial court had awarded the class $10.1 billion in damages but an appeals court overturned the verdict, ruling that the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) had authorized the use of the terms “light” and “low tar” in tobacco advertising, subject to certain limitations. However, in a separate (and later) lawsuit, the FTC filed a “friend of the court” brief stating that it never intended to authorize the use of the terms “light” and “low tar.” In this case, the court found that the appeals court would have ruled differently if the plaintiffs had been able to enter evidence of the FTC’s position, which became available after trial. Additionally, the court ruled that the trial court had exceeded the scope of its review in a ruling barring the case on the question of damages. The court reinstated the case with the original verdict intact, which is likely to be appealed by tobacco companies. 


Price v. Philip Morris, Inc., 2014 IL App (5th) 130017 (Ill. App., 2014).

  • United States
  • Apr 29, 2014
  • Appellate Court of Illinois, Fifth District



  • Michael Fruth, individually and on behalf of all others similarly situated
  • Sharon Price, individually and on behalf of all others similarly situated

Defendant Philip Morris, Inc.

Legislation Cited

Illinois Consumer Fraud and Deceptive Business Practices Act

Related Documents

Type of Litigation

Tobacco Control Topics

Substantive Issues

Type of Tobacco Product