Va. High Court Reverses $20M Jury Verdict Against Mazda

Law360, New York (September 8, 2016, 8:33 PM EDT) -- The Virginia Supreme Court on Thursday reversed a $20 million jury verdict in favor of a woman who was paralyzed in a rollover crash in her 1995 Mazda Miata convertible, saying that there are no government standards that require soft-top roofs to provide rollover protection.

The state high court said that when Shannon Walters' Miata was made, there were no government or automotive industry standards at the time that required soft-tops to protect passengers during a rollover crash, and even now the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration has excluded convertibles from its safety standards for roof crush resistance.

"Indeed, the NHTSA...

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