Purpose of the Legal Defense Fund 

The purpose of the Legal Defense Fund is to provide legal and/or financial assistance to franchised dealers in proceedings before administrative agencies, federal and state courts, and other legal and regulatory proceedings that have a significant impact and importance to the dealer body or a broad cross section of IADA members. 

The Fund may also be employed by the Association when it initiates action or intervenes on behalf of the membership.  The Legal Defense Fund is a valuable way for IADA to support dealers who stand up to assert heard-earned rights under the Motor Vehicle Franchise Act.

Recent examples of cases where the IADA Legal Defense Fund provided assistance include:

  • The IADA Legal Defense Fund supported Nissan and Infiniti dealers in a successful challenge to Nissan North America’s illegal warranty cost recovery surcharges on the Nissan and Infiniti dealer body.  The illegal surcharges totaled almost $10 Million across the Illinois Nissan and Infiniti dealer body.

  • The IADA Legal Defense Fund supported an Illinois Supreme Court challenge to an Appellate Court decision prohibiting a dealership from electing to bring  Motor Vehicle Franchise Act claims for monetary damages directly in Circuit Court rather than before the Motor Vehicle Review Board.

  • The IADA Legal Defense Fund has also supported successful challenges under the Motor Vehicle Franchise Act to protest the location of same-line dealerships within an existing dealer’s relevant market area and to protest the imposition of sales tax on vehicles put into interim use by a dealer even though the vehicles were part of the dealership’s sales inventory.  

Legal Defense Funds are expended only upon approval of the IADA’s Executive Committee or Board of Directors on behalf of IADA members who contribute to the Legal Defense Fund.  If you are not sure whether you have made your Legal Defense Contribution for this year, you may contact IADA at (217) 753-0220. 

Dealership participation in the IADA Legal Defense Fund is a simple way to safeguard legislatively-created dealer rights under the Motor Vehicle Franchise Act for the benefit of all Illinois franchised dealers.