UPDATE 1-Skilled Healthcare told to pay $671 mln in damages

* Damages
awarded for violation of health and safety code

* Co says may appeal verdict

* Punitive damages yet to be decided

* Co says does not have insurance to cover

July 7 (Reuters) – U.S.
nursing home operator Skilled
Healthcare Group Inc (SKH.N)
said a California jury ruled that
the company has to pay $671 million in damages to patients for
violating the state’s health and safety code.

The jury has yet to hear the punitive damages phase of the
trial and will continue to further deliberate on the class
action lawsuit, which was filed more than four years ago.

"The company would be required to post a
bond for 150
percent of the final judgment amount," Skilled Healthcare said
in a statement.

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