Toyota recalled over 10 million vehicles worldwide because of unintended acceleration issues. The sticky accelerator pedals and poorly designed floor mats put millions of motorists at risk. These serious safety issues significantly depreciated the value of the recalled vehicles resulting in a financial loss for the owners.
On July 18, a U.S. District Judge in Santa Ana, California, gave final approval of the Toyota agreement to settle a major class action lawsuit filed on behalf of thousands of consumers. According to a Bloomberg news report, the settlement is valued at $1.63 billion and will result in individual payments to Toyota owners who lost money because of the depreciation in the value of their vehicles. Individual payments that will go to the plaintiffs can be as little as $9.74 and as much as $10,000 depending upon the model of Toyota owned, rented, or leased.
It is important to point out that this settlement does not resolve any of the personal injury or wrongful death lawsuits that resulted from the unintended acceleration issues. There are many individual claims across the country that will be handled on a case-by-case basis. For example, there is a wrongful death claim pending in Los Angeles that was filed by a man whose 66-year-old wife was killed in the year 2009 when her Toyota Camry accelerated beyond her control and struck a tree.
If you have suffered an injury because of a mechanical malfunction or defective auto part, there are a number of steps to take to protect your best interests. First, it is important to call the authorities, file a report, and collect evidence from the crash site. You should also seek out immediate medical attention to document the severity of your injuries. It is then important to have a skilled San Jose auto product liability lawyer preserve your damaged vehicle for a complete inspection.
The experienced San Jose personal injury attorneys at Caputo & Van Der Walde LLP help injured victims of defective auto parts get the support they need. We offer free, no-obligation case evaluations at (800) 900-0863 to anyone who has suffered a loss in a San Jose car crash.