The makers of the Goped scooters are suing two law firms over a judgment entered against the company in connection with a 13-year old accident.
Attorney William McCann filed the lawsuit Tuesday on behalf of Patmont Motor Werks, which was forced to file Chapter 11 bankruptcy as a result of the judgment.
“We would not have taken this action if this judgement were not manifestly unfair,” said Patmont Chief Executive Officer Gabriel Patmont. “We are just trying to keep our company alive and preserve jobs in this community.”
The original Goped was invented by Patmont’s father in 1985.
According to McCann the firms of Leonard and Leonard, and Lewis, Roca, Rothgerber failed to distinguish between Patmont Motor Werks of California and the Nevada company.
According to documents filed in Douglas County District Court, a New Jersey resident with a Goped was struck by a driver in December 2001. The case went to binding arbitration, but was resurrected in 2009.
Because Patmont California was no longer in business, the plaintiffs received a default judgement for $27 million.
McCann said the attorneys then sent a letter to the court saying that Patmont Nevada was the alter ego of the California firm without allowing Patmont Nevada to argue they weren’t.
A writ was filed in Douglas County in 2012 that led to $27,000 being seized by the sheriff and forcing the company into Chapter 11 on Aug. 27, 2012. The filing cost the company $3 million in lost revenue because it couldn’t fill orders.
In his filing, McCann said the original victim in the case is able to ride in extreme skateboard competitions as seen on Youtube videos, therefore indicating that he isn’t still suffering any infirmities from the accident and isn’t entitled to a judgment.