Jayne Conroy is beautiful, sharp and a successful lawyer, and she’s a woman’s woman through and through. Now Jayne will be representing women who own Toyotas (over 60 percent of Toyota owners) in a class action suit against the company.
FOF Jayne was recently appointed as one of 18 lead plaintiff attorneys nationwide (including only one other woman) in the Toyota suit. These lawyers represent all of the people in the US who have been hurt financially or personally by Toyota’s failure to disclose the car’s sudden acceleration problems. (Individuals do not need to file separate lawsuits in cases such as this.) It’s estimated that Toyota’s consumer fraud caused about 6 million Toyota/Lexus vehicles in the US to lose value and about 400 deaths or injuries.
Jayne isn’t real pleased that there are just two women lead lawyers, but “it’s an old boys club that’s hard to crack,” she says. Originally, no women were proposed to the Court to run the litigation, but after Jane complained about lack of female representation in such a high-profile case, she and other women lawyers were allowed five minutes to pitch their credentials.
“Apparently I persuaded the Judge that I am completely qualified for the role (despite my being female!),” Jayne says. (Qualified she is, having successfully worked on and settled the class action suit against Pfizer for the deaths and injuries caused by the drugs Bextra and Celebrex.)
Toyota’s lawyers (two out of four are women) will be paid hefty hourly fees, whether or not Toyota wins. Jayne and the other plaintiff lawyers will be paid only if Toyota makes a settlement. In the meantime, they’ll be paying all the necessary expenses to defend the case for millions of Toyota owners.