WWBH Successfully Defends MMPA and Construction Defect Cases

by | January, 2023 | Firm News

Partners Jackie Kinder and Lucas Ude, recently brought in three successful trial results for our clients; results clearly indicative of our dedication to and focus on excellence in our trial outcomes.

Jackie Kinder tried two Missouri Merchandising Practices Act (MMPA) cases before juries in Phelps County and St. Louis County circuit courts, obtaining favorable results in each. In Phelps County, the case also involved a Breach of Contract, Fraud, Conversion and Punitive damage claims against a local car dealership for selling a vehicle without a title. The vehicle was sold to Plaintiff without having the title and it was later lost in the mail when sent to the Plaintiff by the dealer.  Plaintiff repudiated the sale under RSMo. 301.210 and returned the Jeep and instituted suit; presenting evidence claiming damages including the original purchase price of the vehicle, plus damages for a rental vehicle, loan amounts, trade in vehicle, etc. The jury found in favor of Jackie’s client on all counts.

In the second MMPA trial in St. Louis County concerning the sale of a BMW, Plaintiff claimed Jackie’s client, the car dealership, misrepresented the condition of the vehicle when it was sold to plaintiff.  Plaintiff took the vehicle to a local BMW dealership shortly after she purchased it, who gave her an estimate of several thousand dollars of damages on it.  Defendant denied that it was aware of any problems with the vehicle and offered other vehicles to Plaintiff.  Plaintiff kept the vehicle but sued the Defendant for violations of the Missouri Merchandising Practices Act and for punitive damages.  Both claims were submitted to the jury.  While the jury found in favor of the Defendant on the punitive damages claims, they nonetheless awarded Plaintiff $5,800.00 in damages for MMPA violations.

In a separate and highly nuanced case, after a nearly week-long arbitration proceeding, Lucas Ude obtained a successful result for his contractor client. In this case, the contractor was alleged to have caused over a million dollars in defective construction on a new building that the contractor had agreed to construct. The evidence was complex, as defects centered on the construction and design of a large commercial roof and the subsequent need for replacement of areas the owner claimed was defective. At the conclusion of the arbitration, Lucas secured a favorable arbitration ruling for the client. What’s more, in addition to the favorable ruling, the contractor was awarded attorney’s fees and cost of the arbitration.