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Jury Splits Compensatory Damages Award Among Ford, At-Fault Driver

Shelby County, Tennessee
Nov 13, 2009

Meals v. Ford

CASE RESULTS DEPEND UPON A VARIETY OF FACTORS UNIQUE TO EACH CASE. CASE RESULTS DO NOT GUARANTEE OR PREDICT A SIMILAR RESULT IN ANY FUTURE CASE.

Mother of a paralyzed 6-year-old sought damages from Ford for failure to install an integrated child restraint in its 1995 Mercury Grand Marquis in Shelby County, Tennessee. Plaintiff, through her attorney, J. Houston Gordon, sought in excess of $60 million dollars in compensatory damages and also sought additional punitive damages. Ford argued the true fault in the case rested with the driver of the at-fault vehicle and the parents who failed to properly restrain the child. After an 8 ½ week trial and 3 days of deliberation, the jury found total compensatory damages of $43,800,000, and divided them 15% to Ford, 15% to the father and 70% to the at-fault driver. No punitives were awarded. This case is on appeal.

Trial Team

  • Sandra Ezell
    Partner, Richmond
    804.819.1156
    Product Liability Litigation, Class Action and Multidistrict Litigation, Toxic Torts and Environmental Litigation, General Liability Litigation, Motor Vehicles, Consumer Products, Medical Device and Pharmaceutical, Chemicals, Cleaners and Pesticides, Industrial Equipment
    Partner, Richmond

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