Canada’s largest tobacco companies in court today to fight a ruling which is forcing them to pay out more than a billion dollars in settlements.
A Quebec court ruled that four tobacco companies Imperial, Rothmans, Benson & Hedges and JTI-MacDonald have to cough up about 15.6 billion to smokers who fell ill or became addicted and could not quit.
Compensation of more than 1.1 billion was to be paid within the first 60 days after the judgement, regardless of whether they appealed.
Two 1998 suits that were consolidated are the primary catalysts in the judgement.
It was believed to be the biggest class-action lawsuit ever seen in Canada.