November 4, 2010
SCOTUS Oral Argument in Preemption Case: Williamson v. Mazda
The Supreme Court heard oral argument yesterday in Williamson v. Mazda Motor of America, Inc. (08-1314), which presents the question:
Where Congress has provided that compliance with a federal motor vehicle safety standard “does not exempt a person from liability at common law,” 49 U.S.C. § 30103(e), does a federal minimum safety standard allowing vehicle manufacturers to install either lap-only or lap/shoulder seatbelts in certain seating positions impliedly preempt a state common-law claim alleging that the manufacturer should have installed a lap/shoulder belt in one of those seating positions?