Jobs at BMW of North America | Ladders
BMW of North AmericaWoodcliff Lake, New Jersey

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BMW of North America, Inc. v. Gore, 517 U.S. 559 (1996), was a United States Supreme Court case limiting punitive damages under the Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment. The plaintiff, Dr. Ira Gore, bought a new BMW, and later discovered that the vehicle had been repainted before he bought it. Defendant BMW of North America revealed that their policy was to sell damaged cars as new if the damage could be fixed for less than 3% of the cost of the car. Dr. Gore sued, and an Alabama jury awarded $4,000 in compensatory damages (lost value of the car) and $4 million in punitive damages, which was later reduced to $2 million by the Alabama Supreme Court. The punitive damages resulted not only from Dr. Gores damages, but from BMWs egregious behavior across a broad spectrum of BMW purchasers over a multi-year period of time in which BMW repaired damaged vehicles and sold them as new to unsuspecting buyers as a matter of routine business operation. {L. Andrew Goggans, M.A.} Whether excessively high punitive damages violate the Due Process clause of the Constitution.

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Founded: 1975
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