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Can a Dealership Be Held Liable for Accident Injuries?

Written by Ankin Law Office

When a vehicle defect causes a car accident, the car dealership that sold the car can be held responsible for property damages and injuries that occur.

Beware: Vehicle Defects Pose Injury Risks

Whether purchasing a new car or a used car, the car may have defective parts. The risks are considerably higher in used cars due to high mileage, wear-and-tear, older parts, and reconditioned parts. Depending on the type of vehicle, the vehicle’s age, and the seller, it’s important to understand the risks of defective parts that contribute to serious driving accidents.

Most drivers are aware of accident risks on the road, but they don’t expect their cars to malfunction while they’re behind the wheel. There are various operational components in vehicles that can lead to a crash if they fail. Auto accident attorneys see many accidents and injuries caused by:

  • Defective steering systems
  • Faulty suspension systems
  • Faulty brakes and brake pads
  • Leaking or faulty tires
  • Airbags that do not deploy
  • Faulty seat belts

Many vehicle defects are caused by malfunctioning components that cause drivers to lose control of their cars. When this happens on a busy freeway at 65 mph or a crowded city street filled with pedestrians, the outcome can be expensive property damages, as well as severe injuries and fatalities.

Liable for Accidents and Injuries

When a car accident is caused by vehicle defects, the dealership that sold the car, as well as manufacturers who made the defective parts can be held liable for damages.

Claims Against Car Dealerships

Car dealers are responsible for inspecting vehicles, providing regular maintenance, and making necessary repairs before selling a car. They are also responsible for handling vehicle recalls issued for safety problems. All car dealerships are notified of vehicle recalls issued by NHTSA  (National Highway Transportation Safety Administration), a federal agency.

When a car dealership is issued a recall notice, they are required by law to schedule maintenance to replace defective parts in all vehicles. Used car dealers are required to have vehicles inspected before selling them to buyers. If repairs are not made or recalled parts are not replaced, the dealership can be held liable for all damages. Drivers and other injury victims may file personal injury lawsuits through an auto accident attorney to recover compensation for vehicle and property damages, medical expenses, lost wages, rehabilitation costs, and pain and suffering caused by a car crash.

Categories: Auto Accidents