Portland Brake Defect Attorney
Brakes are one of the most important and relied upon parts of a motor vehicle. If a car’s brakes suddenly fail or malfunction, there is often little a driver can do to remain in control of the vehicle and a crash often results. Such crashes can not only involve the vehicle with the faulty brakes, but can typically involve collisions with other vehicles, motorcycles, or pedestrians. As you can imagine, serious injuries can happen in an accident caused by defective brakes.
When you purchase a car or have your brakes replaced, you should be able to trust that the brake manufacturer designed and produced brakes that were safe and free of defects. In addition, Oregon has specific laws regulating the standards and requirements for brakes. At the Johnston Law Firm, our Portland brake defect attorneys help victims in brake failure accidents hold negligent parties accountable, so please call our office today if you have been in a crash.
When Are Companies Responsible For Brake Failure?
Following an accident, blame is generally assumed to be on the part of one of the drivers involved in the collision. However, it is important to recognize when a third party–such as an auto manufacturer–can be held responsible for your accident-related losses.
If your brakes suddenly failed, it is important to state this fact to the police responding to the scene of the accident. In addition, you should not make any statements accepting blame for the crash as the brake failure may not be your fault. You should also discuss your case with an attorney as soon as possible as an automotive expert will need to examine the brakes and identify what caused the malfunction.
A company can be held liable for brake failure if the company did any of the following:
- A manufacturer negligently designed the brakes with inherent defects;
- A manufacturer negligently produced the brakes using inadequate materials or improper assembly;
- Failed to properly test or inspect the brakes;
- Improperly marketed the brakes for the wrong type of vehicle or without any necessary warnings;
- Not providing any necessary instructions regarding the brakes.
If a manufacturer was negligent in any of the above ways and an accident resulted, you can file a legal claim against them for product liability under Oregon law. Products liability laws protect consumers from companies that sell unsafe or defective products and auto brakes are no different. Such protections involve providing damages for the following losses and more:
- Medical bills (past and future);
- Lost income and benefits (past and future);
- Permanent disability;
- Loss of enjoyment of life;
- Emotional distress;
- Physical pain and suffering;
- Punitive damages (often available if the company knew the brakes may be dangerous).
If you have lost a loved one in an accident due to brake failure, you can hold the company liable by filing a wrongful death claim. The damages available in a wrongful death claim are different than a product liability personal injury case, so you want to discuss your situation with an attorney with thorough knowledge of wrongful death laws.
How Long Do You Have To File A Claim?
There are strict statutes of limitations that limit the amount of time you have to file a legal claim after an accident in Portland. The statute of limitations for product liability claims is two years from the date of the accident and injury caused by the brake failure. If you do not have your claim properly filed in the correct Portland court within two years, you will likely lose your right to recover any damages.
How A Portland Brake Failure Lawyer Can Help
Brake manufacturers are often large corporations with millions of dollars in annual revenue–if not more. These companies have many legal tools at their disposal to help fight against liability in injury or wrongful death claims. Their corporate insurance agents and legal teams can be intimidating and can try to convince accident victims to accept a settlement offer that is severely inadequate. An experienced product liability attorney at the Johnston Law Firm will have the knowledge and resources to stand up against these large companies in court and to identify when a settlement offer is insufficient. We will help you through every step of the legal process and ensure that you receive the maximum compensation that is available in your particular case.
Call For A Free Consultation With A Portland Personal Injury Lawyer Today
If you have been in an accident due to brake defects, you are likely dealing with serious injuries and are emotionally shaken up. While the last thing you may want to think about is a legal claim, it is critical to discuss your case with a brake defects attorney as soon as possible to begin seeking compensation for your injuries. Call the Johnston Law Firm at (503) 546-3167 today.