In a short answer, yes, a repair shop can be held liable for a car accident. Anyone can be held responsible if they fail to meet their responsibilities, leading to injury or property loss. Repair shops are required to exercise a certain level of care. They are also required to be transparent about that level of care.
Car accidents as a result of faulty repair are not the most common kind of car accident. But they happen by the thousands annually. That means that hundreds of car accidents caused by vehicle problems occur in every state every year.
Keep reading to find out more about liability when a vehicle problem causes an accident.
How Often Do Faulty Repairs Cause Car Accidents?
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration conducted a study between 2005 and 2007 to examine the causes of car accidents. Most car accidents, approximately 94 percent of them, were caused by a driver. But two percent of them were attributed to vehicle component failure or degradation as the cause of the accident.
The NHTSA found the most common vehicle component failures that led to car accidents to be:
- Tire problems (35%)
- Brake problems (22 %)
- Steering, suspension, and transmission problems (3%)
- Other unknown vehicle problems (40%)
All of these cases don’t necessarily mean a car repair shop is liable. But it does mean they could be held responsible if they repaired the vehicle on any of these parts, and an accident resulted after the repair.
If you wonder if a car repair shop can be held liable after a car accident, ask a South Carolina personal injury or car accident attorney. We know how to get the answers you need.
Legal Responsibilities of Car Repair Shops
A car doctor can be compared to a healthcare physician in several ways. They have a duty of care responsibility that is a legal responsibility. If they mess up, someone could be seriously injured for life or death.
Auto repair shops in South Carolina are bound by S 0644, which stipulates the laws by which car repair shops are regulated. Some of the most important aspects of the law require that car repair shops:
- Must provide a written estimate before work on a vehicle
- Receive consent from the customer before the repair occurs
- Display regulations
- Provide written notice of the kind of parts the mechanic will use
You might see a display or a notice in a car repair shop that says the mechanic or car shop is not responsible for any vehicle damage after repairs. This statement is not entirely true. They can be held liable and are held liable in the United States every day. Ask a lawyer what to do in this case.
It is important to note that S 644 also stipulates that a customer that brings an action against a repair shop or mechanic has one year to do so. This statute of limitations is a little lighter and more stringent than many South Carolina vehicle provisions, which can run as long as two or three years.
If you are bringing an action against a mechanic or repair shop after a car accident, preserve all documents. Act quickly. Contact the car accident attorneys at McCravy Law for a free consultation and get help meeting the statute.
Documentation Required in Car Repair Shop Litigation
A car repair shop can absolutely be held liable after an accident. If you are suing a car repair shop, take absolute care with every piece of documentation you have. Document every conversation with them, even if it means that you take notes after a phone call.
Keep a file of everything in writing that you get from the repair shop. They are responsible if you can show they were negligent in a repair.
Many car accidents undergo investigations from a law enforcement unit. These types of units are specifically structured to recreate and analyze the cause of accidents.
That is because law enforcement wants to ensure that victims are compensated when they are injured or suffer losses. You could lose work, medical costs, and endure tremendous pain and suffering after an accident.
Here is an idea of the paperwork you need to bring for activities such as suing them:
- Documentation of all replaced parts
- Your written requests, including emails and text messages
- Copies of any voicemails or even records of in-person conversations (you can record conversations without another party’s consent so long as you are a party in the conversation)
Contact a South Carolina personal injury attorney for help during these investigations. The car accident attorneys at McCravy Law work with these problems every day.
Contact a South Carolina Car Accident Attorney Today
Anyone who does not carry out a reasonable level of care can be held liable for personal injury or loss. This duty of care includes car repair shops that are duty-bound to preserve safety.
If you believe that your car repair shop did not meet the level of care required, you can take action against them. You will need to show they were negligent or careless and that this negligence caused the accident. You will also need to show damages such as property loss, lost wages, or personal injury.
Any suffering after an accident is considered “damages” in court. Document everything that happened before and after the accident. If you experience emotional trauma or distress after a car accident, that is pain and suffering.
You will prove your case with this documentation. Show every bandage that costs you as a result of this negligence. Keep the documents and files that you don’t even think that you need.
You never know when they will come in handy. A South Carolina car accident attorney and personal injury attorney will, though. We are specialists in recreating accidents when we fight for our clients who have suffered from someone else’s negligence.
We are available 24 hours a day and 7 days a week, no matter what is going on in the world. We’ve fought for clients just like you for decades. Don’t be intimidated by the car repair shops or shady mechanics.
Let us help you investigate this thoroughly so that you can get the compensation you deserve after a traumatic experience like a car accident. Book a free consultation online or call us at (864) 388-9100 today.