Third Wave: 1995-2015

Disclosure of a trove of insider documents by paralegal Merrell Williams and the 1994 Congressional hearings by the Waxman Committee set the stage for the Third Wave of lawsuits.

In the early-to-mid-1990s, more than 40 states commenced litigation against the tobacco industry, seeking monetary, equitable, and injunctive relief under various consumer-protection and antitrust laws. Mississippi, Florida, Texas and Minnesota were the first states to sue the tobacco companies to secure reimbursement for health care costs associated with smoking, and the four states settled with the tobacco industry defendants between 1997 and 1998.

Liggett & Myers broke ranks with the other cigarette companies in 1997 and settled cases and produced many previously confidential document. The evidence was posted on-line for the general public to view.

1998 – Master Settlement Agreement

In 1998, 46 states and the tobacco companies entered into a Master Settlement Agreement that set limitations on the companies and disbanded the Tobacco Institute and the Council for Tobacco Research.


Following are prominent Third Wave cases with links to detail pages: