Tobacco Industry Legal Disputes

When litigation arises, it is a distraction for corporate management and an interruption of the company’s true business. Our skilled tobacco litigators are equipped to successfully handle a variety of matters, such as representing tobacco manufacturers in matters ranging from multi-district litigation to commercial disputes in state and federal courts. Our attorneys have served as lead counsel in state and federal courts around the country.

A principal focus of our tobacco litigators is representing tobacco manufacturers, distributors, retailers and suppliers in all aspects of their businesses, including regulatory compliance, FDA requirements, administrative disputes involving a federal or state governmental entity, commercial agreements and tobacco taxation matters.

Additionally, our litigators handle civil and criminal disputes with federal and state agencies concerning:

  • Manufacturing
  • Import and export permits and payment of excise taxes
  • State business, wholesale, dealer, and other licenses
  • MSA-compliance, including assistance with listings to sell product on state tobacco directories

Finally, the Tobacco Team regularly counsels distributors, wholesalers and manufacturers, as well as others involved in all aspects of tobacco product production and distribution, in matters concerning, among other things:

  • Retail buyers programs
  • Wholesale partners programs
  • Buy-down discount disputes
  • Various contractual issues

But more importantly, our Tobacco practice understands the business needs of our tobacco manufacturing clients and make the real goal to avoid litigation when possible.

  • In the course of approximately one year, obtained three preliminary injunctions and/or temporary restraining orders as lead counsel on behalf of tobacco companies in disputes with states and the federal government.
  • Represented tobacco product manufacturers in commercial disputes with distributors. Obtained a $5.2 million judgment on behalf of a cigarette manufacturer against a distributor after a two-day trial. Virginia Brands, LLC v. Kingston Tobacco, Inc., Case No. 4:10CV00009, 2010 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 131116 (W.D. Va. Dec. 10, 2010).
  • Represented a cigarette distributor in multi-million dollar RICO litigation against a major tobacco manufacturer.


Practice Highlights