G. Stephen Covert et al
v Lorillard et al

United States District Court, Middle District of Louisiana
The Honorable Frank J. Polozola presiding

G. Stephen Covert, Scott H. Covert, Christopher R. Covert, and L.C. Stop Teenage Addiction to Tobacco brought a personal injury suit against Liggett, Philip Morris, Brown & Williamson, Lorillard, and the Tobacco Institute.

Timeline

1993 – January 8: Discovery Pre Trial Memorandum on Defense Motion
1994 – January 27: Defendant verdict

“Mrs. Covert did not wish to become a party to the lawsuit. Instead she donated any cause of action she had prior to filing suit to her children and to the Stop Teenage Addiction to Tobacco organization. The donees filed suit. After Mrs. Covert died, her heirs filed a separate wrongful death suit.”
“The plaintiffs allege that Jane H. Covert’s lung cancer was caused by her almost 40 years of cigarette smoking. She was diagnosed in March, 1986. The defendants argued that the donees did not have standing to sue.”

1990 – November 8: Case comes to trial

“The case was heard in the United States District Court, Middle District of Louisiana before the Honorable Frank J. Polozola. The judge denied a motion to dismiss as moot on November 8, 1990.”

“He held that a personal injury right to damages was strictly personal and could not be donated. Thus, Mrs. Covert’s donation was null. The filing suit by the donees interrupted prescription by giving the defendants notice of the claim. The judge granted a motion to amend to substitute Mrs. Covert as a real party in interest by way of her heirs. The suit did not abate because the smoker had died; her heirs had the right to substitute themselves as plaintiffs.”

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