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The lawsuit alleges that Kia and Hyundai concealed a safety defect in millions of vehicles that has led to a surge in thefts potentially impacting millions of vehicles.
LOS ANGELES—Today, the nationally recognized law firm of Baron & Budd is pleased to announce that Shareholder Roland Tellis has been appointed co-lead counsel in a Multi-District Litigation class action lawsuit against vehicle manufacturers Hyundai and Kia.
In September 2022, Tellis filed a class action lawsuit alleging that Hyundai and Kia failed to install a common safety component called an “engine immobilizer” which has resulted in an increase in thefts of the affected vehicles. Other class actions followed suit and the cases were ultimately centralized in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California.
According to the lawsuit, millions of certain Kia (2011-2021) and Hyundai (2015-2021) vehicles equipped with the traditional insert-and-turn type of key-based ignition systems are not fitted with an engine immobilizer that prevents the vehicle from being started without the vehicle’s specific smart key. This means car thieves can easily steal the vehicles by opening the steering column and using any metal object, typically a USB, to start the engine. The suit alleges that the defect has become so widely known that teenagers are posting videos on social media explaining how to steal the vehicles.
“Not only are many owners of these vehicles having to deal with theft and damage to their vehicles and personal property, but now numerous others are seeing a drop in the value of their vehicles and having to pay more for their insurance simply for owning these types of vehicles. I am very pleased to be appointed co-lead counsel in this matter and I look forward to holding these companies accountable,” said Baron & Budd Shareholder, Roland Tellis.
Baron & Budd has represented plaintiffs in some of the most high-profile cases. Our attorneys have won consumer protection cases against some of the world’s largest auto makers like, Honda, Toyota, Ford, BMW, and FCA. Baron & Budd attorneys filed the first lawsuit in the Takata Airbag Recall and represented plaintiffs in the Volkswagen Audi Emission Fraud Lawsuit.
ABOUT BARON & BUDD, P.C.
Baron & Budd, P.C. is among the largest and most accomplished plaintiffs’ law firms in the country. With more than 45 years of experience, Baron & Budd has the expertise and resources to handle complex litigation throughout the United States. As a law firm that takes pride in remaining at the forefront of litigation, Baron & Budd has spearheaded many significant cases for hundreds of entities and thousands of individuals. Since the firm was founded in 1977, Baron & Budd has achieved substantial national acclaim for its work on cutting-edge litigation, trying hundreds of cases to verdict and settling tens of thousands of cases in areas of litigation as diverse and significant as dangerous and highly addictive pharmaceuticals, defective medical devices, asbestos and mesothelioma, California wildfires and environmental contamination, fraudulent banking practices, e-cigarettes, motor vehicles, federal whistleblower cases, and other consumer fraud issues.