What If Your Car Catches Fire?

Vehicles fires are more common than you know. Whether the car is in your driveway or on the road when the fire starts, chances are that legal actions are available to you. If your car recently caught fire, here is what you need to know.  

Why Did the Fire Start?

The cause of the fire will play a major role in your personal injury case. Understanding the cause will help determine who you can hold responsible for the damages and any injuries that are suffered. 

For instance, if you were involved in a horrific car accident and one defective part failed to prevent the fire, your attorney could argue that both the crash and the part were responsible for the fire. In this instance, your attorney might pursue a claim against the driver of the other car and the manufacturer of the part.  

Do Recalls Impact Your Case?

Ideally, when a recall is issued for your car or a part, you should take the steps necessary to have the problem remedied. However, if you failed to do so and the car caught fire as a result, you could have trouble placing the blame on the manufacturer or dealer.  

If there was an active recall on your vehicle that you were unaware of, you need to show that the manufacturer or dealer did not take the appropriate steps to notify you. For instance, you could argue that you did not receive a notice in the mail and did not see any notices posted in local papers or online.  

What Can You Do?

If another party is responsible for your car catching fire, you have a couple of available options. Which option you choose depends on the responsible party. For instance, if the fire was the result of a mechanical defect, you can choose to file a product liability claim against the manufacturer or file a claim with your insurance provider. If you file a claim with your insurance provider, they will pursue compensation from the manufacturer.  

In the event that the fire was started by an accident with another driver, you can file a claim with his or her insurance provider if the other driver was responsible for the accident. If you were responsible for the accident, whether or not your insurance provider would be willing to pay for the damages depends on the type of policy you have.  

Work with an auto accident attorney experienced in handling fire-related car damages to further explore your options.