Saturday, March 19, 2005

Virginia franchise statute for motorcycle dealers declared unconstitutional

In Yamaha Motor Corp. v. Jim's Motorcycle, Inc., the Fourth Circuit in an opinion by Judge Michael, joined by Judge Luttig and Senior Judge Baldock of the Tenth Circuit, held that a provision of Virginia's motorcyle dealer franchise law, Va. Code 46.2-1993.67(5), unduly burdens interstate commerce in violation of the dormant Commerce Clause.

Interestingly, the case deals with the plan of Yamaha to locate a new dealership in Southwest Virginia, specifically in Russell County. An existing Yamaha dealer in Bristol protested.

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