— A Ford F-150 master cylinder class action lawsuit has taken a sharp turn with a ruling handed down by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit.
The 2013-2018 Ford F-150 brake failure lawsuit was first filed more than five years ago alleging the Hitachi step-bore brake master cylinders were defective.
According to the Ford F-150 lawsuit, Ford installed defective brake master cylinders which relied on internal seals to maintain necessary pressure while braking. The plaintiffs contend the internal seals fail and leak fluid into the boosters.
This allegedly causes brake failures in the F-150 trucks because the master cylinder pistons allegedly need two cup seals to prevent brake fluid from leaking.
The judge dismissed most of the F-150 master cylinder claims in 2019, but the plaintiffs were granted approval to amend their class action lawsuit.
What began as a nationwide class action was eventually certified for only five statewide classes for “all persons who purchased or leased a 2013–2018 Ford F-150 equipped with a Hitachi made step-bore master cylinder not included in Safety Recall 20S31” in Alabama, California, Florida, Georgia and Texas.
Ford F-150 Master Cylinder Lawsuit — Sixth Circuit Opinion
The appeals court referenced the important rules that must be met for a class action lawsuit to proceed.
According to the opinion, Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 23 "serves as a gatekeeper to class certification."
"The Rule erects four threshold safeguards: numerosity, commonality, typicality, and adequacy. Satisfying the Rule requires a named plaintiff to offer '[s]ignificant' evidentiary proof that he can meet all four of those criteria, where they are contested." — Sixth Circuit
The appeals court ruled the district court should not certify a class until its “rigorous analysis” shows that not one or two, but all four Rule 23(a) prerequisites are met.
According to the appeals court, the "district court in this case certified statewide classes to resolve three issues relating to a purported brake defect in Ford F-150 pickup trucks. For the most part, the district court thoughtfully considered the issues presented in concurrent motions for summary judgment and class certification."
But the Sixth Circuit requires "precision across the board," and the "district court's cursory treatment of commonality, one of the four necessary class action ingredients, failed to meet Rule 23’s stringent requirements."
The appeals court granted Ford's petition for review and to "vacate the class certification order, and remand for more searching consideration."
In short, there currently is no Ford F-150 master cylinder class action lawsuit for truck owners in Alabama, California, Florida, Georgia and Texas.
The Ford F-150 master cylinder class action lawsuit was filed in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan: Weidman et al., v. Ford Motor Company.
The plaintiffs are represented by the Miller Law Firm, P.C., Beasley, Allen, Crow, Methvin, Portis & Miles, P.C., and DiCello Levitt & Casey.