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Valparaiso Jury Awards Consumer $310,000 In Breach Of Warranty Action Against Toyota
Updated June 13, 2018 6:54 AM
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(VALPARAISO) - On June 8, after a 4 day jury trial, a verdict was delivered in favor of long-time former Valparaiso resident, Jared Thieme, against Toyota Motor Sales USA in a breach of warranty action brought in the Superior Court of Porter County.

The case involved a new 2012 Toyota Tundra that Mr. Thieme purchased on August 13, 2012 for $43,838. As the winter approached, Thieme experienced difficulty starting the vehicle, malfunction warning lights illuminating, and the vehicle chugging and riding rough.

After giving Toyota 3 chances to fix the problem, he was told by Toyota's dealer that the computer in the vehicle was incorrectly reading the alcohol density content of the fuel. Thieme was also told that Toyota had no fix for the problem and that they were "working on a recalibration for the computer."

For months, Thieme called Toyota seeking an update for when his vehicle would be fixed.

In May of 2013, an update was performed pursuant to Toyota's Technical Service Bulletin 58-13, but that did not repair the condition, which reappeared in the winter.

On March 8, 2014, Toyota advised Thieme that no further repairs could be performed.

Thieme then retained Krohn & Moss, Ltd. Consumer Law Center ®, a consumer protection firm that has handled over 40,000 "lemon law" actions nationwide, including over 2,500 in Indiana.

Instead of settling Thieme's well-founded claims, Toyota fought the case for over 4 years claiming that Thieme's problems were caused by contaminated fuel.

A Porter County jury saw through Toyota's defense and awarded Thieme $31,000 representing the amount he overpaid for the vehicle.

The jury also awarded $279,000 for Thieme's incidental and consequential damages.

Additionally, federal law will allow Thieme to recover his attorneys' fees and costs.

John Barker, Mr. Thieme's counsel, commented, "This verdict sends a message to Toyota to not ignore its customers. If they sell a bad vehicle they need to do the right thing or there will be repercussions."

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