Vehicle Recall: Will It Impact Your Personal Injury Lawsuit?
Operating a motor vehicle is something that most people do, but it is also something that is very commonly the cause of injuries or even death. Given this grim reality, one might want to know what it means when a vehicle that they are operating or used to operate gets recalled by the manufacturer. How might this impact their personal injury lawsuit if the recall-affected vehicle was involved in the accident that injured them?
In 2015, around 51 million individual vehicles were recalled, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Manufacturers have the legal and ethical burden of ensuring that their products are safe for consumers to use. Most often, vehicle recalls involve parts that can cause minor problems though some can be very serious as they may cause fatal injuries.
Liability and the Law
Just because a vehicle was recalled does not mean that the manufacturer is automatically responsible for the damages that occurred in the recalled vehicle. The reality is that if a vehicle or vehicle part has been recalled, the manufacturer has at least admitted that there is a problem with the automobile. That will likely be an important part of your personal injury lawsuit in proving the manufacturer’s liability for the accident resulting in your injury.
How Having a Personal Injury Lawyer Can Help
It can be very beneficial to have a personal injury lawyer on your side for a variety of reasons. Those who do not know how the legal system works do not often make it very far in terms of having their case heard and taken seriously. In addition, a seasoned car accident lawyer Harrisonburg VA relies on will be familiar with the legalities of the judicial process and how to build a successful case. Vehicle recall injury cases can be complicated and often require industry expert testimony. An experienced attorney is more likely to have a network of experts they’ve worked with in the past who can testify on your behalf.
What to Do If There Is a Recall
If you receive notice from the manufacturer of a recall for your vehicle or a vehicle part, for safety reasons, you should act on this immediately. They will likely offer to repair the car immediately and at no charge to you. If you are not on the manufacturer’s contact list to be notified of recalls, you may be able to sign up for them through their website. Very often, this is necessary if you purchased the vehicle as used rather than new.
If you are aware of a recall involving your vehicle but did not take it in for service prior to getting into an accident caused by that defect, this may or may not affect your lawsuit. A respected personal injury attorney can review your case to determine the potential impact.
Thanks to our friends and contributors from MartinWren, P.C. for their insight into personal injury and automobile litigation.