RALEIGH, N.C. – The North Carolina Court of Appeals has unanimously affirmed a $37 million verdict in favor of Smith Anderson client, Plasma Centers of America (“PCA”), against Talecris Plasma Resources.
In December 2010, a Wake County jury concluded that Talecris Plasma Resources, based in Research Triangle Park, breached its contract with PCA. Talecris had contracted with PCA in 2007 for PCA to develop eight plasma centers for Talecris in California and Indiana. After PCA had invested substantial time and money in developing the centers, Talecris breached the contract by backing out of the deal shortly before construction of the centers was finished. The trial lasted for two weeks, with jury deliberations extending over the course of two days, after which the jury found in PCA’s favor on all issues.
Talecris appealed the trial court judgment to the North Carolina Court of Appeals. In April 2012, Smith Anderson partner Michael W. Mitchell argued the appeal on behalf of PCA. Smith Anderson partner Clifton L. Brinson also represented PCA at the appellate hearing.
A three-judge panel of the North Carolina Court of Appeals unanimously affirmed the trial court. Lead lawyer in the case, Mr. Mitchell, explained: “The issues on appeal were very limited. The Court of Appeals rejected all of Talecris’s arguments, and concluded that PCA proved its damages with reasonable certainty at trial.” Because the Court’s decision is unanimous, Talecris has no right to appeal to the North Carolina Supreme Court, but could seek discretionary review.
The $37 million award is one of the largest jury verdicts in North Carolina history. Including statutory interest, the current value of the judgment is in excess of $48 million.
“We are very pleased for our client, and honored that they called upon our Firm to handle this complex case,” said Carl N. Patterson, Jr., the managing partner at Smith, Anderson, Blount, Dorsett, Mitchell & Jernigan, L.L.P.