Phillips v. Lithia Motors, Inc.

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David A. Szwak
Posts: 1974
Joined: Thu Jul 13, 2006 11:19 pm

Phillips v. Lithia Motors, Inc.

Post by David A. Szwak »

Phillips v. Lithia Motors, Inc.
Slip Copy, 2006 WL 1113608
April 27, 2006


MICHAEL R. HOGAN, District Judge.
*1 This court previously granted motions to dismiss plaintiffs' RICO claims and all other claims for the resulting lack of jurisdiction. Plaintiffs asked for the opportunity to file an amended complaint, which the court allowed. Plaintiffs' counsel responded by filing additional complaints and adding numerous plaintiffs and a new type of claim to this action. The second amended complaint is 507 pages long and alleges 153 claims for relief. Plaintiff's second amended RICO statement is 67 pages long. Once again, all parties move to dismiss. Plaintiff's counsel spent several months crafting a response to the motions.
Plaintiffs allege claims under the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO), 18 U.S.C. § 1961 et seq. against Lithia Motors, Inc.; Lithia HPI, Inc.; Lithia Medford Hon, Inc.; Lithia Motors Support Services, Inc.; Hutchins Imported Motors, Inc.; and numerous individual officers and employees of various Lithia operated entities. Plaintiffs also allege Oregon RICO claims, fraud, Unlawful Trade Practices Act claims and have also alleged, for the first time in the second amended complaint, claims under the Truth in Lending Act. Plaintiffs also assert lender liability under the FTC “Holder Ruleâ€
David Szwak
Chairman, Consumer Protection Section, Louisiana State Bar Association
Bodenheimer, Jones & Szwak
509 Market Street, 7th Floor
Mid South Tower
Shreveport, Louisiana 71101
Fax 318-221-6555

Post by Guest-1634 »

This decision by Judge Hogan is currently subject to a motion for reconsideration as to several of its aspects, including the ruling as a matter of law that the FTC Holder Rule (or its contractual effect) does not create derivative liability for the asignee for the tortious and unlawful conduct of the assignor (seller) under common law fraud and Oregon's Unlawful Trade Practices Act. The hearing is scheduled for February 6, 2007. If the court does not reverse its ruling, there is an alternative motion for leave to take an immediate appeal of this issue to the Ninth Circuit.
Among other issues to be argued is plaintiffs' challenges to an adhesion arbitration clause. We think we have met our burden under Greentree to establish prohibitive costs, among other challenges.
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