Can you sue a manafacture for faulty air bags?

When I wrecked my car a man pulled out in front on me. He was charged with failure to yield, no licence, in someone else’s car. I hit him head on at 45 mph totaled my car. I got hurt when the air bags didn’t come out, not a one of them worked. I received neck and back sprain, chest contusions a concussion.

Asked on June 27, 2016 under Personal Injury, North Carolina

Answers:

S.L,. Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

You have a product liability case against the manufacturer of the air bag and the seller (auto dealer).
Both the manufacturer and seller are liable for negligence and strict liability.
Negligence on the part of the manufacturer is the failure to exercise due care.  Due care is the duty to manufacture a product that is not defective.
The seller (auto dealer) is liable even if the auto dealer could not have known that the airbag was defective.
In addition to the negligence claim, you also have a separate claim for strict liability.  Strict liability imposes liability whether or not due care was exercised.
Prior to filing a lawsuit against the manufacturer and seller for negligence and strict liability, it may be possible to settle the case with the insurance carriers for the manufacturer and seller.  Your personal injury claim filed with those insurance carriers should include your medical bills, medical reports and documentation of wage loss.
Compensation for the medical bills is straight reimbursement.  The medical reports will document the nature and extent of your injury and will be used to determine compensation for pain and suffering which is an amount in addition to the medical bills.  Compensation for wage loss is straight reimbursement.
If the case is settled with the insurance carriers for both the manufacturer and seller, NO lawsuit is filed.
If you are dissatisfied with settlement offers from the insurance carriers, reject the settlement offers and file your lawsuit for negligence and strict liability.
If the case is NOT settled with either insurance carrier (manufacturer and seller), name both the manufacturer and seller as defendants in your lawsuit.
If the case is settled with one, but not both parties, only name the party with whom the case has not settled as a defendant in your lawsuit for negligence and strict liability.
If the case is NOT settled, your lawsuit must be filed prior to the expiration of the applicable statute of limitations or you will lose your rights forever in the matter.


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