If you are driving down the highway at 60 mph, you need to be able to trust that your brakes are going to work. Unfortunately, a severe defect may prevent you from being able to slow down or stop your car.
A brake defect puts you and other drivers at risk for severe injury or even death. What can you do if a car defect puts you in harm's way?
When can you file a lawsuit for faulty brakes?
Unlike a typical personal injury claim, you can file a claim for a car defect without proving negligence on behalf of the dealer or manufacturer. Even if the manufacturer intended to make your vehicle safe, they are still liable for serious product defects that cause injury. When making a claim, you will need to show:
- The vehicle's defect was "unreasonably dangerous."
- The defect caused injury
- At the time of the injury, you were using the car as intended
- You did not substantially alter the condition of the car since its purchase
Your claim may be dismissed if you knew about the defect and continued to use your vehicle, or if the manufacturer shows that negligence on your part contributed to the injury.
The defect can originate at any point of time before you purchase the vehicle, including part design, vehicle manufacturing or shipment.
What should you do if you are injured due to faulty brakes?
Depending on the severity of the injury, either seek medical attention immediately or file a report with the police if you can. Make sure to take down all details of the accident, road conditions and how your car failed to operate as intended.
Once you speak with the police, visit the hospital for a full exam. Make sure to note and address any injuries. Keep a weekly journal of your injury status, symptoms and improvements. This can help your case if you choose to make a claim.
Contact an attorney who can evaluate your circumstances and help you seek fair compensation for your accident. You have a right to expect a safe vehicle and compensation for being unjustly put in harm's way.