Court Dismisses First Sudden Acceleration Case Against Toyota Over Technicality ~ Greatest Vehicles

Sunday, 2 October 2011

Court Dismisses First Sudden Acceleration Case Against Toyota Over Technicality

The sudden acceleration issue is still troubling Toyota, which has already paid $50 million in fines and recalled almost 8 million vehicles in the US alone in 2009 and 2010. The Japanese carmaker still has to face the lawsuits brought about by citizens and their families affected by the issue which, according to estimates, could cost the company as much as $10 billion.
However, the first sudden acceleration lawsuit lawsuit was dismissed by a federal judge who ruled that it should have been filed in Utah instead of California. The case is about Paul Van Alfen and passenger Charlene Lloyd, who were killed in 2010 when a 2008 Camry driven by Van Alfen hit a wall in Utah.

The judge ruled that the warranty claim didn’t meet the required $50,000 USD threshold for damages as the plaintiffs couldn’t count potential personal injury or punitive damages in this case.
“Plaintiffs are unable to reach the jurisdictional threshold of $50,000 in damages,” said U.S. District Court Judge James V. Selna. “The case is dismissed for lack of jurisdiction.”
“We are pleased this jurisdictional issue has been resolved and that the court agrees withToyota that the proper forum for this case is the Utah state court”, said the company's spokeswoman Celeste Migliore.

The dismissal due to the lack of jurisdiction does not mean it's the end of the case. Mark Robinson, an attorney representing the plaintiffs, said: “I am drafting a new complaint right now in which the dealer will not be named as a defendant and everything will be cured and the suit will go forward seeking punitive damages and everything else.”
Story References: Bloomberg


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