Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association
Contact: Norita Taylor, [email protected]
Headquarters: (816) 229-5791
For Immediate Release
OOIDA v. Pacific Financial moves forward
The Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association said its class action lawsuit against Pacific Financial Association was given the go ahead by the Arizona Court of Appeals to move forward.
The court issued an important precedent-setting ruling that OOIDA’s lawsuit for breach of fiduciary duty under a BMC-85 Trust could proceed. The lawsuit was filed in 2013 alleging that Pacific Financial breached its fiduciary duties under the BMC-85 Trust by failing to pay claims promptly, failing to terminate the trust upon the aggregation of claims as required under the Trust, favoring certain beneficiaries to the detriment of others, and engaging in conflicts of interest.
The Court of Appeals reversed a lower court ruling that the lawsuit could not proceed under either Arizona statute or common law, concluding that such claims were perfectly entitled to proceed under common law. The Court of Appeals also reversed and vacated the lower court’s award of $85,000 for attorneys’ fees against OOIDA. The ruling paves the way for OOIDA to obtain discovery from Pacific Financial and for the case to be tried on the merits.
“The court’s ruling sets an extremely important precedent in holding trustees like Pacific Financial accountable for losses incurred by small-business truckers at the hands of brokers who have failed to pay their claims,” said OOIDA President and CEO Jim Johnston. “The case also sends a clear message to other BMC-85 trustees throughout the country and carries out the objective of protecting truckers against ‘dishonest and financially unstable middlemen in the transportation industry.’”
Johnston said that OOIDA will ensure that those interests are “fully vindicated in its suit against Pacific Financial” and other cases involving similar conduct.