Beasley Allen: Toyota MDL will be Handled in California
Joint Panel on Multi-District Litigation announces lawsuits resulting from Toyota sudden unintended acceleration will be handled in U.S. District Court for Central District of California
MONTGOMERY, Ala., April 9 -- After hearing from dozens of plaintiffs' attorneys last week, on April 9, 2010, the U.S. Judicial Panel on Multi-District Litigation announced it has selected the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California to hear litigation surrounding Toyota sudden unintended acceleration (SUA). Lawsuits include both individual personal injury claims and consumer class actions filed on behalf of Toyota owners who claim the value of their vehicles has been negatively affected by Toyota's SUA problems.
Beasley Allen attorney W. Daniel "Dee" Miles, head of the firm's consumer fraud section, has filed consumer class actions in four states to date - Alabama (John Harding v. Toyota Motor Corporation.; Civil Action No. 10-100-MEF; United States District Court, Middle District of Alabama; Judge Mark E. Fuller; and Johnny Griffin v. Toyota Motor Corporation.; Civil Action No. 10-114-MEF; United States District Court, Middle District of Alabama; Judge Mark E. Fuller), California (Lacey Laudician v. Toyota Motor Corporation.; Civil Action No. 10-1030-CBM(PLMx); United States District Court, Central District of California; Judge A. Howard Matz & Magistrate Judge Fernando M. Olgin) , Florida (Arlene Heilbrunn v. Toyota Motor Corporation; Civil Action No. 10-80208; United States District Court, Southern District of Florida; Judge William Zloch/Mag Judge Barry Seltzer; and Renita Cipriani v. Toyota Motor Corporation.; Civil Action No., 10-427-T-24TGW; United States District Court, Middle District of Florida; Judge Susan Bucklew & Magistrate Judge Thomas F. Wilson) and Georgia (Vivian Stoller v. Toyota Motor Corporation; Civil Action No. 10-00024-CDL; United States District Court, Middle District of Georgia; Judge Clay D. Land). These will be included in the MDL as IN RE: Toyota Motor Corp.: MDL NO. 2151.
Miles says he is not surprised by the panel's decision. "The MDL Panel's decision to send these cases to Judge James V. Selna in the Federal Court for The Central District of California makes logical sense and is a good choice," Miles said. "That court has the most advanced set of cases in the country currently. Judge Selna is a proven jurist with vast experience in complex litigation and is the perfect Judge for this litigation."
Nearly 200 lawsuits related to Toyota sudden unintended acceleration have been filed in federal and state courts throughout the country. This decision will consolidate consumer and personal injury suits in one jurisdiction.
Toyota's U.S. Headquarters is located in Torrance, Calif. More than 8 million Toyota vehicles have been recalled worldwide for sudden unintended acceleration problems. Toyota has blamed the problems both on defective or improperly installed floor mats, and sticky accelerator pedals. Toyota also has recalled vehicles for problems with the anti-lock brakes.
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