$2 Billion Judgment Against Ford Reversed by Ohio Court
Last week, an Ohio appeals court rejected the largest judgment against Ford in the automaker's history, rejecting the judgment on the basis that evidence was improperly excluded in the trial. Ford truck dealers in the state of Ohio are claiming that Ford broke an agreement to sell trucks at published prices between 1987 and 1998. Ohio truck dealers sued Ford, and one dealer won a $4.5 million jury verdict in 2002. Extrapolating that award to 3000 dealers, Cuyahoga County Judge Peter J. Corrigan said the damages could total $1.98 billion.
In the 2002 case, dealers claim Ford did not fully disclose the prices paid by other dealers as part of the "competitive price assistance" program, which gave dealers the opportunity to petition for wholesale discounts to make them more competitive with other Ford truck dealers.
The appeals court reversed Corrigan's decision, and is granting Ford a new trial.