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Ford in Class Action Suit Ordered to Pay $2 Billion to Dealers

Source: WSJ

Posted on 13 Jun 2011

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A Cleveland judge upheld a jury verdict against the Ford Motor Co. earlier this year and ordered the automaker to pay almost $2 billion in damages to thousands of dealers.

Judge Peter J. Corrigan, of the Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Court in Cleveland ordered the payment in the class-action lawsuit on behalf of 3,000 dealers who claimed Ford overcharged them on commercial truck sales. The jury sided with the dealers in February.

Ford had dealers pay a total of $800 million more than they should have for nearly 474,289 trucks sold, according to the order. The suit was filed in 2002, with Westgate Ford Truck Sales Inc., a dealership in Youngstown, Ohio, representing the class.

Ford said it believes the trial court committed significant legal errors and will appeal the ruling. "We are confident that it will be reversed," Ford said in a statement.

Ford said its pricing program for the trucks "caused no harm to our dealers. Rather, it brought significant benefit to the dealers."