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In Boudreaux v. Pettaway, the Alabama Supreme Court upheld a $4,000,000 verdict. The jury actually awarded $20,000,000.00, but the Mobile Circuit Court trial judge determined the award to be too high and remitted it to $4,000,000.00. Remittur is a mechanism by which a trial judge can reduce a jury’s award. There is no procedure or mechanism for a judge to increase the amount of a jury’s award.
This case was brought by the mother of the deceased 32 year old who died from aspiration pneumonitis as the result of negligent administering of anesthesia. The defendants appealed the reduced verdict to the Alabama Supreme Court. The Supreme Court affirmed the verdict.