SW Legal studies in Business

Courts Have No Jurisdiction Over Cases Claiming Remote Possibility of Injury

Texas high court held that the court had no jurisdiction over a proposed class action suit involving ten million affected parties who are alleged possible victims of a claimed product defect that has not shown harm to date. Such remote prospective cases will not be accepted.

Topic Court Procedure
Key Words

Class Action; Future Injury

C A S E   S U M M A R Y

Three plaintiffs brought suit on behalf of a nationwide class of ten million owners of Chrysler vehicles equipped with Gen-3 seatbelt buckles that were used on cars for a decade. The seatbelts were approved by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Plaintiffs contend it is too easy to press the release button on the buckle unintentionally. They contend this poses a safety hazard that should require Chrysler to replace all buckles with ones harder to unlatch. The district court granted class certification. The case was appealed.


Reversed and remanded. A person who buys a defective product can sue for damages, but courts do not decide hypothetical cases. A plaintiff must have concrete and particular injury. No injuries have been alleged, only the chance of injuries. Since no specific harm has been alleged, the plaintiffs have no standing and the courts have no jurisdiction to accept the case.


DaimlerChrysler Corp. v. Inman, ---S.W.3d--- (2008 WL 274903, Sup. Ct., Tx., 2008)

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