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What to Do If a Defective Car Part Causes an Accident

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What to Do If a Defective Car Part Causes an Accident

Photo of a Defective Car Part Recall

Auto defects are one reason why car accidents result in deaths and injuries each year. While automakers must notify vehicle owners of a defective car part by issuing a recall, some vehicles may go without a recall for many months or even years.

General Motors failed to issue a recall for its faulty ignition switch for a decade. This defect caused many car owners to lose vehicle functions while driving. During the time between GM finding the defect and issuing a recall, many people died or suffered life-altering injuries.

Automakers may decide to not issue a recall when a vehicle or part has a defect. Recalls mean free repairs for vehicle owners and lower sales. Fortunately, you may be able to recover compensation for damages suffered due to a defective auto part. The threshold for suing an automaker is lower than it is for car accident cases involving other drivers.

What Are Damages in an Auto Defect Case?

Damages in an auto defect case are similar to damages in other types of personal injury cases. Auto defects may cause serious injuries or deaths. You may be able to recover compensation for the following damages in an auto defect lawsuit:

  • Medical bills
  • Funeral expenses
  • Travel expenses
  • Home modification costs
  • Costs associated with rehabilitation or in-home medical care
  • Loss of income and future earning capacity
  • Expenses related to pain and suffering 
  • Punitive damages, also called “punishment damages”

Compensation is essential for serious injuries. Without compensation, it would be very difficult for most people to cover the costs associated with a loss of income, medical bills and modifications to a home or vehicle after an accident.

You could recover compensation through a settlement or jury verdict. In some cases, the automaker may refuse to settle and it may be necessary to go to trial.

Should I Speak to an Auto Defect Attorney?

An attorney can help in a number of ways. Your attorney could gather and preserve evidence that is crucial to your case and negotiate a settlement on your behalf. For example, an attorney could use medical experts to assess your damages or work with accident reconstruction specialists to determine fault. If necessary, your attorney could take your case to trial against the automaker.

With car accident cases involving other drivers, you must demonstrate that the other party’s negligence or reckless behavior caused your damages. However, automakers are strictly liable for damages caused by defects. You do not have to demonstrate negligence.

You should contact an attorney as soon as possible if you suspect an auto defect caused your loss or injuries. There is a statute of limitations for filing a claim in New Jersey. After you pass this statute of limitations, it may no longer be possible to recover compensation for your damages. 

Contact Our Vineland Product Liability Lawyers for More Information

Were you or a loved one harmed by an auto defect? Our Vineland product liability lawyers can help you review your legal options. We have experience with auto defect cases. You can learn more about our experience with auto accident cases by exploring our website.

Call us for a free consultation by dialing (856) 692-6500 or by using the contact form on our website.

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