Ohio Supreme Court holds pain-and-suffering law constitutional

December 27, 2007


Ohio Supreme Court holds pain-and-suffering law constitutional
Thursday,  December 27, 2007 10:52 AM
COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) --  A state law that limits how much a person injured by a defective product can collect in pain-and-suffering damages was upheld Thursday by the Ohio Supreme Court, a reversal of its last ruling on the issue eight years ago.


The challenge has been closely watched across the country by attorneys representing injured people and companies that support the concept of caps.

The 5-2 ruling came in a lawsuit filed by Melisa Arbino, a Cincinnati property manager, over the Ortho Evra Birth Control Patch made by Johnson & Johnson. She contended that the product caused her permanent physical damage and threatened her ability to have children, and her lawyer argued that limits on damages were unconstitutional.

The majority opinion, written by Chief Justice Thomas J. Moyer, said the Ohio law revised in 2004 did not violate the constitutional rights of injured parties to trial by jury, to a remedy for their injuries or to due process and equal protection.

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce, National Association of Manufacturers and the National Federation of Independent Business Legal Foundation had joined in urging the court to uphold the law.

Groups urging the court to overturn it included the Ohio Academy of Trial Lawyers, the Ohio Conference of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People and Mothers Against Drunk Driving.