Home Case Results Jamie Lee Andrews as surviving spouse of Micah Lee Andrews, Deceased v. Autoliv Japan, Ltd. U.S.

Product Liability / Defective Seatbelt / Wrongful Death

1/3/2022 - $127,019,343

Jamie Lee Andrews as surviving spouse of Micah Lee Andrews, Deceased v. Autoliv Japan, Ltd. U.S.; District Court for the Northern District of Georgia. On January 3, 2022, a federal judge in Georgia, Hon. Steve C. Jones, returned a bench verdict for Plaintiff in a seatbelt spoolout, airbag nondeployment case involving a 2005 Mazda 3 equipped with an Autoliv R27LL retractor with 2.0kN load limiter. The case was tried for 5 ½ days in early October 2021. Micah Andrews was the properly belted driver of the subject vehicle. While driving, the vehicle left the road and hit a cluster of trees. Although the impact itself was survivable, Plaintiff died because the occupant restraint system failed. The Mazda 3 was equipped with airbags that did not deploy, although they should have. It was also equipped with a seatbelt, which completely spooled out, causing so much slack it did not restrain him. Micah’s head slammed into the steering wheel with such force it shattered his skull, killing him. The judge entered a judgment in the amount of $127,019.343.40 against Autoliv but apportioned 50% of the compensatory damages to Mazda, reducing the judgment against Autoliv to $113,509,671.70. That reduction is under review as a result of post-trial motions filed by Plaintiff. Plaintiff was represented by James E. Butler, Jr. of Butler Prather LLP, assisted by Butler Prather paralegals Cathy Huff and Beth Glen and by Tedra Cannella and Rory Weeks of Cannella Snyder PC. At trial, Defendant Autoliv’s corporate representative admitted on cross-examination by Butler that the seatbelt spool out was foreseeable and foreseen, that it could have been avoided, and that not avoiding the foreseeable when the potential consequences are catastrophic is, in effect, the same thing as intentional conduct.

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