What is a defective car?
A defective vehicle isn’t crashworthy, usually due to a vehicle design defect or manufacturing defect.
What is crashworthiness?
Because accidents are foreseeable, vehicle manufacturers have a legal duty to design and build crashworthy vehicles. That means cars need to be safe enough to prevent injuries and deaths during a collision.
A crashworthy vehicle is designed and built to minimize and distribute the force inside the vehicle to mitigate the occupant’s injuries.
Which parts of a car have to be crashworthy?
The entire vehicle and its components must be crashworthy, including:
- Seat belts
- Seat backs
- Gas tanks
- Door latches
- Side-impact protection
This also includes any technology that comes with the vehicle to improve performance and safety, such as lane keep assist, blind-spot detection systems, and adaptive cruise control, also must be crashworthy.
Who’s responsible for a vehicle’s crashworthiness?
Crashworthiness is a measure of whether a vehicle manufacturer designed the vehicle and its components to be safe to use. If you were hurt in a car accident and find the vehicle wasn’t crashworthy due to a defective part or design, you may hold the manufacturer liable.
What kinds of defects are there?
There are three categories of product defects: design, manufacture, and failure to warn defects.
- Design defects are inherent in the product and affect each unit produced.
- Manufacturing defects arise during the manufacturing and assembly process. This type of defect impacts some of the units.
- A failure to warn means the product lacks necessary instructions or warnings. This defect could impact all or some of the units.
When does a defect lead to an auto recall?
Auto recalls tend to be for specific parts that the manufacturer learns fail or don’t work efficiently. Manufacturers are required to provide free repairs for safety recalls on vehicles up to 15 years old. A vehicle is returned to the factory for repairs, purchased back, or replaced in rare situations.
Defective Automobile Compensation & Setting Things Right
In Pennsylvania, when you or a loved one are hurt because of a defective vehicle, the way to achieve justice is by demanding compensation.
While settlements or verdicts are meant to make you whole, they also force automakers to change. By demanding justice and not backing down, you’re fighting for every driver and passenger out there.
Making You Whole Again
Compensation from a defective product lawsuit is called damages and can be broken down into:
- Economic Damages: These consist of your past and future monetary expenses and losses, such as your medical bills, lost wages, lost earning capacity, and other out-of-pocket costs.
- Non-Economic Damages: These are for your intangible losses, including pain and suffering, scarring, disfigurement, embarrassment, humiliation, and reduced enjoyment of life.
- Wrongful Death & Survival Damages: Particular surviving family members may be entitled to damages for the loss of a spouse, child, or parent, such as medical bills, funeral costs, estate expenses, and loss of their loved one’s future income. Survival damages are different. Your relative’s estate can recover for your loved one’s pain and suffering and lost earnings.
- Loss of Consortium: This compensation is for spouses who’ve lost their loved one’s services, assistance, support, comfort, companionship, and sexual relationship.
At Atlee Hall, we hold negligent automakers accountable and focus on improving your situation. That’s why we go above and beyond when assessing your damages. We paint a vivid picture for the court to prove what it will take to make you whole again.
How to Prove Automobile Defects?
Even if we intend to resolve your claim with a negotiated settlement, our Pennsylvania car defect lawyers prepare every case as if we’re going to trial. We have years of success in the courtroom. We know what it takes to craft a compelling argument the other side can’t defeat.