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Car collision by mechanical malfunction: Who’s at fault?

On Behalf of | Aug 4, 2023 | Car Accidents |

The tragic tale of a car collision often entails a distracted, drunk or drugged driver. But it is not always a negligent driver chasing danger that causes a road accident. Sometimes, it can be a mechanical malfunction.

Tire blowouts, defective seatbelts, faulty brakes and damaged steering systems are some common examples of mechanical malfunction. Depending on the severity of the accident, any of these risk factors can lead to fatal Tennessee car crashes.

But unlike other crashes, those involving mechanical failure require a more technical investigation of how exactly a part or component of the vehicle caused the incident to identify the degree of fault from all possible parties accurately.

Establishing fault

Under the modified comparative negligence rule, the state reduces the awarded damages depending on the percentage of fault shared by the person filing the claim, whose liability must not exceed 50%.

Three possible at-fault parties include:

  • The owner: If the individual or company does not fulfill their responsibility of having their car checked, repaired or maintained
  • The manufacturer: If they overlook a flawed design or product during the construction, production or testing process
  • The mechanic: If the individual or repair shop uses a defective part or tool, or does not follow proper installation procedures

The shock from the crash could lead victims to take their time to heal and recover physically and psychologically. But time also passes quickly in the legal aspect of the case. Especially for severe cases with injuries, death and property damage, the authorities must receive a report within 20 days of the incident. Filing a lawsuit against all possible parties must also happen within three years from the date of the crash.

Holding accountability

A myriad of things can go wrong in operating a vehicle due to the technicalities of its moving parts. Identifying who might be behind every part gone wrong depends on the vehicle’s condition, which parties had a hand on it and their insurance companies. If you are experiencing this legal mess, you must know that you can ask the help of a counsel to analyze your situation and provide a tailored approach to protecting your rights.