German Court Denies Damages to Smoker | Germany| News and in-depth reporting from Berlin and beyond | DW | 21.07.2004
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German Court Denies Damages to Smoker

Germany's Higher Regional Court in Hamm ruled against a smoker who sued the tobacco company Reemtsma for €200,000 ($245,000) in damages. It was the first time such a suit had been brought in Germany. But unlike the landmark 1998 case in the United States which resulted in tobacco companies paying out over $200 billion in tobacco-related claims, the court in Hamm decided the man, who is dying of smoking-related diseases after 40 years of smoking Reemtsma's "Ernte 23" cigarettes, had no claim. The German court upheld the decision in the same case by a lower regional court, which said that smokers are responsible for their own behavior. As everyone knows that smoking is addictive and damaging to health, smokers have no right to expect damages, the court ruled.

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