What You Should Know About Motor Vehicle Safety Recalls
There’s a good chance that during the course of your lifetime, a vehicle you own will receive a recall notice for any one of a variety of reasons. For many individuals, a recall notice seems like more of a hassle than a public safety issue. However, this couldn’t be farther from the truth.
By definition, a recall is mandated by the federal government when safety issues are discovered inside of a vehicle that do not allow the automobile to successfully pass federal safety standards. With that in mind, there’s a good chance that the recall notice you may have received in the mail for your automobile could have significant implications for the healthy and safety of your friends and loved ones.
Why Don’t We Take Vehicle Recalls Seriously?
Knowing that a vehicle recall notice means that part of your vehicle could be posing a life threatening issue, it seems reasonable to assume that vehicle owners would rush to their nearest dealer or repair center to address the issue. Unfortunately, this is not always the case, and the lack of action of this issue is resulting in needless injury and, in some cases, death.
With that in mind, here are a few common misconceptions about vehicle safety recalls in California and other states across the country.
Misconception No. 1: “Taking My Recalled Vehicle in For Repair Means I Won’t Have a Car to Drive”
For those who rely on their car for work and family duties, the idea of not having a functioning vehicle for even a short period of time can be catastrophic. The fear of being “car-less” often leads automobile owners to disregard safety recalls in an effort to ensure that they won’t have to relinquish their car for days or weeks.
While it is possible that a recall could leave you without a car for a few days, a growing number of dealerships are offering loaner vehicles to those who have been impacted by the recall at no charge. Since, technically, the recall is the “fault” of the car manufacturer, most dealerships won’t want to face the public relations fallout if they refused to provide loaner vehicles to those affected by it.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Commission requires car manufacturers to explain in writing whether or not they will be offering loaner cars part of the recall process. This can help individuals plan around the recall and ensure that they have the transportation they need during this time.
Misconception No. 2: “A Recall Will Cost Me Money”
If your auto dealer says that they will be billing you for the recall repairs or replacements, this is a violation of federal law. In fact, mandatory recalls require the automobile manufacturer in question to offer all services associated with the recall free of charge. With that in mind, individuals should not be concerned about finding the funds needed to fix their vehicle. No matter how extensive the recall is, the services needed to resolve the issue must be offered free of charge.
Misconception No. 3: “I Won’t Get Hurt”
Tens of thousands of individuals die on America’s highways each year. A large number of these fatalities are due to defects in automobiles. No matter how safe you think your vehicle actually is, you should never hesitate to address a recall. For each day you choose to ignore a recall notice or postpone service, your risk of getting into a serious accident increases. Given the fact that these recalls can be fixed for free, there is literally no reason not to address these problems right away.
If an automobile company refuses to issue a recall even after discovering a serious problem in their product, this is grounds for a lawsuit, particularly if a driver is hurt due to the company’s negligence.
Our firm has been handling personal injury cases throughout the California Low Desert and High Desert communities for over 30 years. With a 95% success rate, the California personal injury attorneys at Walter Clark Legal Group will fight to hold those responsible for your loss accountable and win compensation to cover medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering. If you have been injured in an accident and want to discuss your legal options, contact us today at (760) 536-8017 for a free consultation with an experienced personal injury lawyer. We have offices in Indio, Rancho Mirage, Victorville, and Yucca Valley and represent clients through the entire California Low Desert and High Desert communities.
DISCLAIMER: The Walter Clark Legal Group blog is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended as legal or medical advice. References to laws are based on general legal practices and vary by location. Information reported comes from secondary news sources. We do handle these types of cases, but whether or not the individuals and/or loved ones involved in these accidents choose to be represented by a law firm is a personal choice we respect. Should you find any of the information incorrect, we welcome you to contact us with corrections.