In 2012, there were more than 22,000 car crashes in Columbus, Ohio, according to the Ohio Department of Public Safety’s 2012 Ohio Traffic Crash Facts Book. While not noted in the statistics, some of those accidents may have been caused by defective motor vehicles or auto parts. Further, in some cases, defects are the result of a mechanic’s faulty repairs. When that’s the case, accident victims may have legal recourse against the auto shop to recover damages for their expenses and losses.
When are auto shops responsible for auto accidents and resultant damages?
Auto repair shops must not be negligent in their repairs or in the warranties that they make to a customer. For example, if a mechanic forgets to tighten a screw in the car or lied about fixing a problem with the car, and the mechanic’s negligence causes an accident, the auto shop may be liable for the damages the customer sustains in that accident.
Car owners still need to be vigilant in repairing problems with their vehicles. If a mechanic calls a customer to report a problem with the vehicle and offers to repair that problem for free and the customer declines the repairs, then the customer may assume the risk of any consequences of that problem.
What should you do if you think an auto shop was responsible for an accident?
If your auto accident is the result of a defective auto part and you believe a mechanic is responsible, you’ll have to present evidence of fault.
Whenever you visit a mechanic, make sure that you keep any invoices, work orders, receipts, contracts or other written documents that you exchange with the repair shop. You can ask the mechanic to attest to any warranties in writing before the repairs begin so you have proof of the guarantees the mechanic made to you. In general, any written evidence that you maintain may help prove that a mechanic was negligent in a case.
If you are in a car accident, keep any medical bills that you receive as a result of the accident, even the ones your insurance company pays. Additionally, don’t accept any offer from the auto shop before talking with a lawyer. This may damage your right to pursue claims against the repair shop in court.
In many cases, the way car owners prove that a mechanic was negligent in repairing their vehicle is by getting the opinion of another mechanic. This may require assistance from a lawyer who can secure testimony or a statement from a credible auto repair expert regarding your vehicle and the repairs performed.
Act Quickly to Secure Your Rights
Ohio Revised Code §2305.10 provides two years in which to file legal action for personal injury. Any claim brought after the statute of limitations is barred. So act as soon as possible to start sorting out liability and establishing negligence.
These cases can be complicated, which is why a capable attorney can be important if you suffer an accident as a result of an auto shop’s negligence. The attorneys at Bressman Law understand how to get you fair restitution if you suffered harm. Call our offices at (877) 538-1116 to schedule a free consultation with a lawyer.