When a competitor sues you for violating the Florida Deceptive and Unfair Trade Practices Act (FDUTPA), that lawsuit has the potential to be very damaging for your business. Among other problems, a successful verdict against you may mean a judgment forcing you to pay a large sum in damages. Obviously, your goal is to fight back and to achieve success. As with any type of commercial litigation action, there are varying degrees of success. One of the highest forms of success is persuading the judge hearing your case either to dismiss the action or to grant summary judgment in your favor. Knowing how to perform the right kind of discovery to get helpful information, and then putting that information to use to get the summary judgment you need, is one aspect among many where having a skillful South Florida commercial litigation attorney on your side can go a long way toward getting your that total success you need.
A recent South Florida FDUTPA case was an example of effective pre-trial litigation by a defendant to achieve that high level of success. The case was a dispute between two auto dealerships over the replacement of defective air bags. The plaintiff was a Toyota dealership in West Palm Beach and the defendant sold Fiat Chrysler automobiles in West Palm Beach and Fort Pierce. Both dealerships sold used cars.
The problem arose after the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration ordered a regional recall of certain airbags in Florida. The Toyota dealership continued to accept as trade-ins used vehicles with those airbags, but then replaced the airbags before offering them for sale on its used car lot. This allegedly caused it to incur substantial expenses for storage and airbag replacement.