A product liability claim refers to a lawsuit filed due to becoming injured or suffering damages because of a faulty or malfunctioning product. The product must have been used in the way intended by the manufacturer and must also be the clear cause of the injury or damages.
Defective Brakes Can Be Deadly
Defective brakes are one of the most frightening examples of a faulty product. A car with malfunctioning brakes is a danger to the driver, their passengers and to all drivers and pedestrians around them. If a driver is in any type of auto accident and the cause is linked to faulty brakes, they should immediately contact an attorney to find out their rights and the possibility of filing a product liability claim.
While the specific laws for this type of lawsuit can vary from one state to the next, generally all of the following four elements must be proven by a lawyer in order to win the case as well as any compensation or settlement sought:
Defectiveness. The product, in this case the brakes of the car, must be proven to be defective.
Injury. The plaintiff must have suffered injuries or losses due to the defective brakes.
Proper use. The operator of the vehicle must have been using the brakes properly and as the manufacturer intended.
A direct connection. The defective brakes must be proven as the direct cause of the injury.
Vehicle brake systems can be highly complex, with numerous parts that can vary from one car to the next. Front and rear brakes, brake discs, rotors, hydraulic lines and calipers must all function optimally together for a brake system to stop a vehicle safely.
If there are design defects, faulty manufacturing procedures or improper installation of any brake system component, the result can be a brake failure that leads to a potentially deadly auto accident.
Common Brake System Problems
A brake system failure results in the partial or total loss of braking power. The driver is then unable to slow or stop the car in a safe and timely manner.
Signs of malfunctioning brakes are a “mushy” feel that gives just partial braking power that is insufficient to avoid an auto accident. Defective brakes can also pull the car off to one side; this in turn can cause the driver to drive into oncoming traffic, off the road, or even cause a rollover accident. Defective brake systems can also suddenly “grab,” causing the car to jerk to an abrupt and unexpected stop.
Some of the causes of defective brakes include:
- Brake discs not properly installed
- Overheating brakes
- Leaking hydraulic lines
- Cracked calipers
Faulty or improperly installed brake systems can fail very suddenly and without warning. A hydraulic line may function fine and provide solid braking for awhile even if improperly installed; however, it can then suddenly come loose, lose all of its pressure, and become compromised. If the driver is driving at a high rate of speed when this occurs, there is a serious risk of accident and injury. In a worst case scenario, defective brakes can lead to catastrophic accidents with fatal consequences.
Partner with an Experienced Attorney
Proving that defective brakes were the cause of your injury or damages can be accomplished by an experienced attorney. If you believe you are the victim of faulty brakes as the cause of your auto accident and injuries/damages suffered, be sure to contact a lawyer to discuss your options right away.
A qualified attorney for this type of case should have experience with defective auto claims and be able to protect your rights in a court of law. Your lawyer should also be able to consult with vehicle design experts in order to show that the accident and resultant injuries were due to negligent actions by the car or brake manufacturer.
Don’t hesitate to contact an attorney to have your case reviewed so they can assist you in receiving compensation in the form of a settlement for your damages.