Victims Can Pursue Compensation Along Varied Paths
The processes used to obtain compensation for injuries sustained in a Colorado car accident differ depending on the reason for the accident. When an accident occurs because of an inattentive or impaired driver, reckless driving, or bad weather or road conditions, personal injury cases typically involve proving that someone else’s negligence caused harm. However, when defective car parts lead to an automobile accident, several theories of liability can be used to obtain compensation for those who were injured.
When a vehicle or car part is defective, resulting in damages, the legal theory of strict liability may be used to obtain compensation. Contrary to a lawsuit brought on the theory of negligence, when strict liability is alleged, a party is not required to show that the actions of a manufacturer, distributor, or seller fell below a specific standard of care. Instead, the product must be proved to be unreasonably unsafe or dangerous when it was designed, manufactured, or sold.
Breach of Express Warranty
Vehicles and car parts typically come with a written warranty or guarantee made by the seller to offer repairs or replace a defective product, part, or service within a specific period of time. Under the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act, a manufacturer or seller must provide an express warranty, in writing, for all products that cost more than $15.
If a vehicle or car part does not meet the standards set forth in the express warranty and causes an accident that leads to injury, a customer may file a product liability lawsuit alleging breach of express warranty. To collect damages, the injured person will need to prove that the automobile or part did not conform to the conditions of the explicit warranty, that they relied on the promise made in the warranty, and that damages were sustained as a result of this reliance.
Breach of Implied Warranty
In the absence of an express warranty, a breach of implied warranty can be used to establish liability. Implied warranties are unwritten guarantees that a product or service is safe and should perform as expected. A breach of implied warranty indicates that certain aspects of a vehicle and its parts should not cause an accident, even if the vehicle is no longer under warranty.
When an implied warranty regarding a vehicle has been breached, a consumer can bring a lawsuit for a defect in a vehicle long after the warranty has expired, because the manufacturer has a duty to make sure that certain parts of the car work when the car is used as it was intended, even years after it was manufactured.
When an accident has been caused by a faulty automobile or part, chances are that others have also sustained injuries due to this defect. In this situation, if your injuries are minor, you might consider joining a class-action lawsuit against the responsible entity, if you have the opportunity to do so. However, if your injuries are more serious, it would be wise to consult with an experienced personal injury attorney and bring your own lawsuit.