The Ruling

Circuit Judge Reid Scott rejected Tesla’s motion to summarily dismiss a lawsuit accusing the company of causing Jeremy Banner’s death in 2019. In a 23-page ruling, Scott found that Kim Banner’s attorneys presented sufficient evidence to let the case proceed to trial sometime next year. Scott also found that Banner can seek punitive damages from the company that, if awarded, could reach millions of dollars.

Win for the Plaintiff

The judge, citing other fatal crashes involving Autopilot , wrote last week that there is a genuine dispute over the issues in this case. Namely, whether Tesla created a foreseeable zone of risk that posed a general threat of harm to others. The attorney for Mrs. Banner said that the ruling shows how Tesla’s conduct was far more than just negligent. Indeed, their behavior involved intentional and reckless decisions that led to the death of customers.

Tesla’s Argument

Tesla argues that it warns drivers its cars are not fully self-driving. They assert drivers must pay attention to the road and that they are ultimately responsible for steering and braking properly. The judge, however, says that by naming the system Autopilot, Tesla implied that the cars are self-driving and don’t require the driver’s full attention.

Misleading Marketing

In an ad on Tesla’s website, one of their vehicles is seen driving through a city’s winding roads and navigating traffic all without the driver’s input. However, in court, Tesla employees revealed that the car in the ad was programmed with mapping software not available to the public. In fact, they say the vehicle performed poorly and even ran into a fence while filming, requiring several takes to complete the video.

The Facts of This Case       

While traveling almost 70 mph, Jeremy Banner activated Autopilot and took his hands off the wheel. To his right, a tractor-trailer leaving a farm moved into his path. The Tesla didn’t detect it and neither it nor Banner braked or swerved. Ten seconds after Autopilot was activated, the car drove underneath the trailer, shearing off the hood and killing Banner instantly. This grizzly scene  could have been prevented had Tesla’s marketing been more up front about the truth.

OUR team

We prefer doing to talking (except in court), We take the bull by the horns and give you clear and practical advice. Personal, to the point, and in plain language. Any questions? Feel free to call or to drop by.

After reviewing your medical costs, lost wages, and pain and suffering damages, we can help you understand what your case is worth and plan a road map going forward.
After reviewing your medical costs, lost wages, and pain and suffering damages, we can help you understand what your case is worth and plan a road map going forward.

$1.056 billion verdict against Exxon Mobil

If you think you may have a claim and need legal help to hold those parties responsible for damage that they have caused, contact an attorney from our firm.

Stag Liuzza fights industry giants across the country and holds them accountable for their actions. We strive to ensure that communities have access to safe drinking water, clean air, and a healthy environment. is operated and provided by Stag Liuzza, LLC responsible attorneys Michael G. Stag and Ashley M. Liuzza. Stag Liuzza, LLC is officed in New Orleans, LA, and our attorneys are licensed in Louisiana and Mississippi.

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Past results do not guarantee any similar result or outcome in your claim. Each claim is different.

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