Lightfoot, Franklin & White, LLC

The Clark Building
400 20th Street North
Birmingham, AL 35203
205-581-0700 (phone)
205-581-0799 (facsimile)

Lightfoot Persuades Alabama Supreme Court to Dismiss Class Action ...

On September 23, 2011, the Alabama Supreme Court reversed a trial court order denying Suzuki's motion to dismiss a consumer class action. The named plaintiffs alleged that Suzuki breached their warranties by closing the dealership in their area, causing them to have to travel to another city to obtain warranty repairs. On behalf of Suzuki, Lightfoot moved to dismiss for lack of subject matter jurisdiction, arguing that the plaintiffs claims were not ripe because neither plaintiff had required repairs when they filed the class action complaint. Lightfoot also explained that the claims were moot because Suzuki contracted with another dealership to provide warranty work in the area in which the Suzuki dealer closed. Lightfoot argued alternatively that the complaint failed to state a viable claim for relief. After the trial court denied Suzuki's motion to dismiss, Lightfoot petitioned the Alabama Supreme Court for a writ of mandamus and successfully urged the trial court to stay its proceedings. The Alabama Supreme Court ordered the trial court to dismiss the class action because Alabama does not recognize constructive breach of warranty actions. Suzuki was represented by Jere White, Sara Ford, Madeline Haikala, and Tenley Armstrong of Lightfoot.

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