The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit issued a ruling affirming a 2009 jury verdict, where HCP (NYSE:HCP) must award approximately $102 million in damages to Ventas, Inc (NYSE: VTR).
According to Ventas, the lawsuit was filed due to tortious interference with business expectation arising out of its acquisition of Sunrise Senior Living REIT in April 2007. The court also reversed a previous decision to block Ventas from seeking punitive damages against HCP for its conduct.
“In light of the evidence presented at trial, we believe it was error for the district court to prevent the jury from considering an award of punitive damages,” said court documents. “Accordingly, we reverse the decision of the district court as to punitive damages, and remand with instructions that the matter proceed to trial on the single issue of punitive damages.”
Ventas originally sought approximately $300 million in compensatory damages as well as punitive damages.
Ventas is a leading healthcare real estate investment trust with diverse portfolio of more than 700 assets in 44 states and two Canadian provinces consists of seniors housing communities, skilled nursing facilities, hospitals, medical office buildings and other properties.
HCP said it’s reviewing the Sixth Circuit’s opinion to determine its options with respect to the ruling.