Guide to Navigating an Accident Due to a Car Defect
If you’ve recently experienced a car accident, you’re not alone. About 25% of all car drivers experience at least one accident each year in America! Car accidents in Las Vegas are an increasingly common occurrence, as well. Due to COVID-19, many people have been driving less, leaving previously packed roads wide open. Unfortunately, this has led to some drivers taking advantage of the now-open roads by speeding excessively on them. While drunk driving and excessive speeding are the most common factors behind an accident, car defects are not far behind.
If you’ve recently been in a car accident because of a defect that has led to an injury, your best course of action would likely be to consult with an experienced Las Vegas injury attorney. Here are some tips to follow in case either your vehicle or another person’s vehicle malfunctions, leading to an accident.
While panicking is usually our first instinct at the scene of an accident, nothing could be less beneficial. While at the scene of the accident, try to remain as calm as possible. Gather all contact and insurance information from other drivers. Even if the accident seems not to have caused an injury, always call the police to have it documented. This can prevent you from being on the receiving end of a malicious lawsuit that claims you caused an injury, holding you responsible for paying the plaintiff’s medical bills.
Have a Mechanic Look at Your Vehicle
By law, it’s a driver’s responsibility to ensure that their car remains safe and drive-able. However, car manufacturers and parts creators can also be responsible for malfunctions. A seasoned, ASE-certified mechanic will be able to document what likely failed in your vehicle. They can then inform you as to whether it’s likely your fault or the fault of a manufacturer.
If it was another person’s vehicle that malfunctioned, try consulting the best personal injury lawyer Las Vegas, who can figure out who the responsible party is and assist you in fighting for the compensation you deserve.
Prepare a Defense
Again, this is likely best done when in consultation with a lawyer experienced in the field. You’ll need to figure out how a court would likely judge in your case. Remember, Nevada is an “at fault” state. This means that courts and car insurance companies are required to evaluate who or what was the cause of the accident. This operates based on “comparative negligence,” or an analysis of how much at fault each party was.
For example, if two parties were exactly 50% responsible for an accident, it’s likely that neither party would receive compensation. However, it is not your fault, legally speaking, if an accident occurs due to a manufacturing defect that you couldn’t have reasonably known about or had time to get fixed.
Know the Statutes of Limitations
Like all states, Nevada has a statute of limitations for personal injury lawsuits when it comes to car accidents. Any party can file a lawsuit up to two years after the fact, which is why it’s vital to document the situation when it occurs. It’s also possible that there is indeed a manufacturing defect in your vehicle or a part in it that wasn’t known at the time of the accident.
If the accident was caused due to a defect, a different limitations period may apply. This is why it’s essential to keep up-to-date on recall notices if you’ve been involved in a car accident in Nevada.
Your Next Steps
While there’s no question that car accidents in Las Vegas can be extremely stressful, establishing where you stand legally doesn’t need to be. The Schnitzer Law Firm is ready to set up a no-obligation consultation to determine the facts and help you understand how to best proceed. To get started with our top-notch personal injury team, feel free to call us at 702-960-4050, email us at Contact@TheSchnitzerLawFirm.com, or simply submit our online form located here. Agents are standing by around the clock!