In an article written in March the AP reported estimates that the lawsuits surrounding Toyota’s recent troubles with auto defects, recalls and sudden acceleration could cost the company over $3 billion dollars when all is said and done. The company has paid over $16 million for its slow response regarding such problems as an Avalon gas pedal recall and floor mat defects in Camry and Prius models according to the New York Times.
There are two types of lawsuits that have been filed against the auto giant concerning sudden acceleration.
The first type are personal injury, or wrongful death cases in which someone who has been injured or lost a loved one due to a defective vehicle is suing Toyota. In May it was reported that the National Highway Traffic & Safety Administration raised the number of deaths that might be related to sudden acceleration from 52 to 89.
The other type of lawsuits filed are Toyota owners seeking compensation for the loss of re-sale value that has come as a result of the recent recalls and problems.
The AP points out that while the settlements for the injury lawsuits will most likely be the larger settlements individually, the sheer number of claims could make the loss of value claims the more expensive for Toyota.
On top of that the article mentioned the possibility that the courts may rule that Toyota needs to pay for the claimants’ attorney fees on top of the settlements which would increase the cost even more for the automaker. In May it was decided by United States District Court Judge James V. Selna that the over 300 cases currently pending against Toyota and all future cases would be consolidated and litigated by an appointed team of attorneys.