Kia Motors America, Inc. Lawsuit

Kia Class Action Ends in $6 Million Verdict for Plaintiffs in NJ

Kia Motors America, Inc. agrees to pay over $6 million settlement in class action lawsuit.

Following a five-week trial of a class action in the matter of Regina Little v. Kia Motors America, Inc., on June 6, 2008, a jury in Union County, NJ found in favor of the plaintiff class and against Kia Motors America, Inc. (“KMA”) in the amount of $750 per class member, for a total verdict in excess of $6,000,000. The precise number of class members has yet to be determined, but will number between 8,000-8,400.

The case involved the plaintiffs’ claim that the Kia Sephia, sold in New Jersey from 1997 through 2000, contained a defect in the braking system which caused premature wear of brake pads and rotors, which needed replacement at approximately 10,000 mile intervals. Because Kia’s warranty did not cover brake components, Kia owners spent substantial sums for additional brake repair expense caused by the defective braking system.

In addition to finding that KMA had breached its express and implied warranty to purchasers of the cars, the jury also found that KMA had violated the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act, which will obligate KMA to pay class counsel fees and costs over and above the $6,000,000 payment to class members. A petition for counsel fees and costs is expected to be filed shortly before the trial judge, the Honorable Katherine R. DuPuis of the Superior Court of New Jersey.

Plaintiff Regina Little, the class representative, and the more than 8,000 members of the class were represented by a team of lawyers including Alan M. Feldman and Edward S. Goldis of Feldman, Shepherd, Wohlgelernter, Tanner, Weinstock & Dodig (www.feldmanshepherd.com); Michael D. Donovan of Donovan Searles, LLC; James A. Francis of Francis & Mailman; and Nicole Acchione of Trujillo, Rodriguez & Richards, LLC. The same team of attorneys was also successful in winning a $5.6 million verdict against KMA in a similar class action tried in Pennsylvania in 2005.

Kia Motors America, Inc. in the News

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