Arkansas Supreme Court justices say yes to big auto lawsuit

Victims sue GM-automaker sold 4 million trucks/SUVs with bad brakes

Little Rock, AK (–Top civil trial lawyers defending the rights of injured drivers and passengers got the green light from an Arkansas U.S. Supreme Court. As reported by the Associated Press (AP), General Motors Corporation (GM) failed to block a class action lawsuit filed in federal court. The class action lawsuit alleges the Detroit automaker knowingly sold 4 million trucks and sport utility vehicles (SUV) with defectively designed parking breaks.

Boyd Bryant filed a lawsuit against GM in September of 2006 and was granted class action certification by a Miller County, Arkansas circuit judge. The big auto manufacturer attempted to block his claim and the class certification. Bryant listed trucks and SUVs the company made from 1999 to 2002 with defective parking brakes in his suit. Bryant claims the company knew about the defective brake design in 2000 and withheld the faulty brake information from dealerships until January 28, 2003. Instead, GM redesigned the brake defect in October of 2001, one year after they discovered the defect.

Legal experts say these are the typical tactics civil trial attorneys meet every day in the U.S. court system. General Motors argued in court the class shouldn’t be allowed because defective product laws pertaining to vehicles vary by state. Big automakers know if they can throw out legitimate claims under a state versus federal loop hole, injured victims and the civil justice attorneys representing them have to start over again at square one. This tactic keeps juries from hearing injured victims claims.

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About the Author Justice Seeker

Heather L. Ryan, R.N., C.L.N.C- Heather Ryan is a Certified Legal Nurse Consultant with 15 years of experience in the health care industry. Her expertise in reviewing medical records and assisting lawyers with the determination as to whether legal action should be taken provides an invaluable asset to the newsroom. Medical-malpractice, products liability, personal injury and workers’ compensation are some of the recent areas of litigation Ms. Ryan has focused her efforts on. A member of the Florida Justice Association, Heather maintains a long list of certifications and credentials to support her areas of expertise and stays up-to-date with her clinical knowledge working as an emergency room/trauma nurse, at a Level 1, Adult/Pediatric trauma and teaching institution in South Florida.