As our readers know, product liability litigation is an important area of the law because it protects consumers who are injured when manufacturers place dangerous goods into the marketplace. In addition to consumer products such as food, toys, medications and medical devices, product liability laws also protect people who have been injured or killed by faulty or defective automobiles.
According to an article by BBC News, Toyota and the U.S. government have reached a $1.2 billion settlement. This settlement was finally reached after a four-year investigation into safety issues with Toyota vehicles. Toyota recalled over 10 million vehicles due to complications with floor mats, accelerator pedals, and brakes. Many cars had sticking gas pedal or unsecured floor mats that resulted in an unintended acceleration.
Attorney General Eric Holder has argued that the car manufacturer intentionally concealed information about the safety problems of the vehicles. He elaborated that Toyota, rather than promptly correcting safety issues they knew about, instead made misleading statements to consumers and supplied falsified and inaccurate information to Congress. He described the instance as a “blatant disregard for systems and laws designed to look after the safety of consumers.”
What is especially noteworthy about this case is that is has gone beyond negligence and entered the realm of criminal penalties. It is also the largest criminal penalty that placed on an American automobile manufacturer too.
Although this litigation was brought by the United States Attorney General, our attorneys represent individuals and families in private actions against manufacturers. We work hard to hold manufacturers liable for the dangers they pose to consumers and injuries they have caused from their negligence. In one product liability case, our lawyers recovered a $3 million settlement against a car manufacturer due to a vehicle’s improper design of the fuel delivery system, that when in an accident caused a fuel-fed fire. The collision and resulting fire killed the occupants, whereas if the fuel system had been properly designed and safe, they could have survived. If you have suffered injuries as the result of a dangerous product, you may be able to recover compensation for your injuries and suffering through a product liability lawsuit. Our attorneys would be happy to hear from you and discuss your potential case in a free consultation. Contact us today.