Car crash. accident on the road

When Is a Car Manufacturer Liable for an Accident?

Law Office of Steven R. Smith Nov. 16, 2023

If you've been involved in a car accident and suspect that a faulty car may have contributed to the accident or injury, you're probably wondering if, and when, a car manufacturer can be held liable for the accident. The process can be challenging; however, you don't have to face these challenges alone.  

At my firm, the Law Office of Steven R. Smith, I can walk you through the process while keeping your best interests in mind. I understand how stressful it can be to start the process while you're trying to recover from injuries or seek damages. I have the knowledge and resources to help you pursue the deserved compensation after an accident as a result of someone else's negligence. I proudly assist clients in Hempstead, Westbury, Mineola, and New Hyde Park, New York, including Long Island.  

Common Car Defects That Can Lead to an Accident 

There are various situations in which a car can be defective, leading to car accidents and injuries. Some common car defects include: 

  • Brake failure: Breaks going out can cause a driver to lose control of the vehicle, resulting in accidents.  

  • Steering system defects: A faulty steering wheel can make it difficult for the driver to steer the car properly, leading to accidents.  

  • Tire defects: Tire issues can cause tires to blow out or lose traction, causing the driver to lose control of the vehicle.  

  • Acceleration defects: Sudden and unintended acceleration is extremely dangerous, making it difficult for the driver to stop the car or avoid a collision.  

  • Electrical system defects: Malfunctions from electrical issues, such as the lights or airbags, increase the risk of accidents.  

These are just a few examples of common car defects that can contribute to accidents. It's important to note that any defect in a car's design, manufacturing, or warning labels can potentially lead to accidents and injuries. 

When a Manufacturer Can Be Held Liable 

A car manufacturer can be held liable for an accident if it can be proven that the accident was caused by a defect in the car. To establish liability, certain conditions must be met: The car had a defect that made it unreasonably dangerous, the defect existed at the time the car left the manufacturer's control, and the defect caused the accident or contributed to the severity of the injuries sustained. If these conditions are met, the car manufacturer can be held responsible for the accident and the resulting damages. 

Types of Defects 

There are three main types of defects that can make a car manufacturer liable for an accident: manufacturing defects, design defects, and failure to warn.  

  • Manufacturing Defects. Manufacturing defects occur during the manufacturing process and can include issues with the assembly of the car or the use of substandard materials.  

  • Design Defects. Design defects refer to flaws in the car's design that make it unreasonably dangerous, even if it is manufactured correctly.  

  • Failure to Warm. A car manufacturer can also be held liable if they fail to provide adequate warnings or instructions about potential dangers associated with the use of the car.  

Each of these types of defects can contribute to accidents and injuries, and if any of them are present in a car, the manufacturer can be held responsible. 

Proving Liability 

To establish liability against a car manufacturer, it is crucial to gather evidence that demonstrates the presence of a defect and its role in causing the accident. This evidence may include expert testimony, vehicle inspections, documentation, and witness statements. Experts in the field can provide their professional opinion on the defect and its impact on the accident. Thorough inspections of the car can help identify any defects or issues that may have contributed to the accident. Keeping records of any repairs, maintenance, or complaints related to the defect can strengthen your case. Eyewitnesses who observed the accident or the aftermath can provide valuable testimony regarding the presence of a defect. By gathering and presenting this evidence, you can increase your chances of proving the car manufacturer's liability. 

Turn to Knowledgeable Legal Help 

Dealing with a car accident and pursuing a claim against a car manufacturer can be complex and challenging. It is crucial to seek the assistance of a knowledgeable personal injury attorney who has experience in product liability cases. As a reliable car accident attorney, I can evaluate your case, assess the strength of your claim, determine the best course of action, gather the necessary evidence to help prove the car manufacturer's liability and negotiate with the manufacturer on your behalf. With my help, you can navigate this complex process and seek the compensation you deserve.  

If you believe a defective car has caused your accident, don't hesitate to reach out to me at the Law Office of Steven R. Smith. I proudly help clients in New York and the Long Island area.