MOUNT VERNON, Ill. (Legal Newsline) - Illinois Fifth District appeals judges granted Stephen Tillery a fresh start on his $10 billion class action against cigarette maker Philip Morris on Feb. 24.
Presiding Judge Melissa Chapman and Justices Bruce Stewart and James Wexstten ruled that a two-year limit didn't run out on Tillery's petition to reopen the case.
Chapman wrote that "we do not believe that the ends of justice would be served if trial courts were unable to grant relief under the unusual circumstances presented here."
Philip Morris claimed the two years started running when the Illinois Supreme Court reversed former circuit judge Nicholas Byron's $10 billion judgment.
Tillery claimed the two years started running when Byron carried out the Supreme Court's order to dismiss the case.
Chapman wrote, "We find little guidance in answering the question before us."
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