Auto Recall Attorneys in New York City
Why Motor Vehicles Are Recalled in New York
Although many causes of car accidents and trucking accidents are beyond the control of even the most conscientious drivers – for example, hazardous road conditions and the actions of other motorists – it is possible to prevent accidents caused by vehicle defects. This is the goal of auto recalls: to remove dangerous vehicles from the road and, if possible, to repair the defective part or parts.
If you have been involved in an auto accident that you believe was caused by a vehicle defect, you have certain legal rights. To make sure that you are fully informed of these rights, it is best to hire an attorney who is experienced in auto recall law, such as the auto recall attorneys of the New York City law firm of Proner & Proner. Our New York auto accident lawyers provide outstanding legal counsel for individuals who have a defective vehicle. To learn more about auto recalls, or to schedule a free case evaluation, contact our law firm today.
Causes of Auto Recalls
An automobile can be recalled if it fails to meet Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards or if it contains safety-related defects. If your vehicle has been recalled for one of these reasons, our NYC personal injury lawyers can advise you of your legal options. The auto recall attorneys at Proner & Proner, based in Manhattan, provide New York residents with outstanding legal counsel. We will work diligently to protect your rights. We have successfully handled car accident cases throughout NY’s five boroughs: Manhattan, the Bronx, Staten Island, Queens, and Brooklyn.
Noncompliance with Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) sets Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards to regulate the performance of motor vehicle parts that affect the vehicle’s safe operation (e.g., brakes, tires) or that protect drivers and passengers (e.g., seat belts, airbags). Numerous auto parts, including child restraints, energy-absorbing steel columns, electrical systems, windshields, transmissions, engines, cooling systems, and windshield wipers, can warrant an auto recall if they are found to be defective.
A safety-related defect is defined as a flaw in the design, construction, or performance of a vehicle (or vehicle component) which puts the public at an unreasonable risk of an accident that may result in personal injury or wrongful death. When one vehicle is found to have such a defect, a recall may be issued for all vehicles of the same design or manufacture, since that group of vehicles is likely to pose the same risk to the public. Examples of safety-related defects include:
- Defective steering components, accelerator controls – can cause loss of vehicle control.
- Faulty fuel system components – fuel leakage can cause vehicle fires in an accident.
- Broken or defective wheels – can cause loss of vehicle control.
- Faulty engine cooling fans that break unexpectedly – can injure a mechanic working on the vehicle.
- Dysfunctional windshield wiper assemblies – can limit a driver’s view in stormy weather.
- Seats that fail unexpectedly – can injure driver and/or passengers in an accident.
- Defective wiring systems – can cause lights to malfunction or vehicle fires.
- Defective air bags that deploy improperly or that fail to deploy – can injure driver and/or passengers in a collision.
Auto defects that are not considered to be safety-related include defective air conditioners and radios, cosmetic flaws (e.g. rust, paint blemishes), excessive oil consumption, and ordinary wear-and-tear of equipment that needs to be replaced periodically (e.g. shock absorbers, batteries, exhaust systems, and brake pads and shoes).
Auto Recalls – The Procedure
An auto recall begins when a consumer or vehicle manufacturer files a report of complaint to the NHTSA. If the NHTSA receives enough of these complaints about the same vehicle, it will usually investigate the alleged defect. If it determines that a safety defect exists, the NHTSA will request that the manufacturer recall the vehicle and repair the flaw. The manufacturer may decline the request, in which case a public meeting is conducted and the manufacturer may refute evidence that there is a defect. The next step is for the NHTSA to make a final decision about recalling the vehicle. Whether the manufacturer complies with the request for recall or challenges the NHTSA’s final decision, the manufacturer must notify all registered owners and purchasers of the vehicle about the potential defect by mail within a reasonable amount of time. If and when the recall is put into action, the manufacturer may repair or replace the part (free of charge) or provide vehicle owners with a refund.
Contact Our New York City Auto Recall Lawyers
If your vehicle has been recalled, our auto recall attorneys, serving all of New York, can help. Our experienced lawyers are dedicated to protecting our clients’ rights in NYC auto accident cases. Contact Proner & Proner today to schedule a free case evaluation.