Big Tobacco Litigation-2013

Big Tobacco Litigation-2013
January 2, 2014 Serena Morones

Oregon v. Phillip Morris et al

Tobacco Master Settlement Agreement

2003 NPM Adjustment Proceedings for the State of Oregon–April 2013


A nationwide arbitration ensued between several US States and the largest tobacco manufacturing companies (Participating Manufacturers or PMs) over provisions of a 1998 settlement agreement (The Master Settlement Agreement) between the states and the PMs. The PMs alleged that several states failed to diligently enforce their tobacco laws that regulate the smaller tobacco companies who did not enter into the Master Settlement Agreement (Non Participating Manufacturers or NPMs). Failure by a state to diligently enforce its tobacco laws regulating the NPMs would permit the PMs to reduce their settlement payments to that state.

Oregon was represented by a team of lawyers from the Oregon Department of Justice Civil Enforcement Division, along with Special Assistant Attorneys General David Markowitz and Lisa Kaner of Markowitz Herbold Glade & Mehlhaf. The PMs were represented in Oregon’s case by Thomas Frederick and Alexander Shaknes of  Winston & Strawn LLP and Kevin Schwartz of Wachtell, Liption, Rosen, & Katz.

Morones Analytics’ Assignment:

The Oregon Department of Justice engaged Serena Morones to serve as an accounting expert on behalf of Oregon. Ms. Morones and her team analyzed data regarding cigarette sales in Oregon and other associated case data and presented her analysis to the arbitration panel. Ms. Morones’ analysis demonstrated that Oregon virtually eliminated sales of non-compliant NPM cigarette brands in 2003 as a result of numerous enforcement actions taken by the Oregon Department of Justice. Jennifer Murphy assisted Ms. Morones in the data analysis.


The arbitration panel found that Oregon diligently enforced its tobacco statutes during 2003. The panel ordered the Participating Manufacturers to pay more than $9 million owed to Oregon.

Media Coverage:

The Oregonian Newspaper

Portland Business Journal