John Eagle Collision Center, the Texas auto body shop that repaired a 2010 Honda Fit roof not according to OEM standards, has been found liable for injuries that occurred to the vehicle’s owners following a 2013 crash. Matthew and Marcia Seebachan were awarded a total of $42 million in damages.
On Monday, a jury found the auto body shop to be responsible for 75 percent of the sum, equating to $31.5 million. The driver of the vehicle that hydroplaned into the Seebachans was responsible for the remaining 25 percent, RepairerDrivenNews.com reports.
Ten of the 12 jurors agreed on the verdict and owed damages, while the remaining two jurors said in a post-trial interview that thought John Eagle should have been held 99 percent responsible.
The Seebachans sued the auto repair shop for negligence after it was allegedly influenced by State Farm to use an adhesive to adhere a roof in place as opposed to welding it as Honda OEM’s specifications stated. However, there is no evidence to show the insurance giant dictated the use of the adhesive for the repair, as of yet. The couple planned to sue State Farm, but dropped the lawsuit 13 days after filing to not delay their trial against John Eagle.
Robert Riggs, a spokesperson from their attorney’s office, however, said that the couple planned to resurrect the lawsuit against the insurer once the case against John Eagle had been decided.