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Jason R. Schultz P.C

Q:
How do I check if my car is subject to recall?

A:

We have all read those stories in the news; accelerators that become stuck or parts of a car that catch on fire. Whatever the vehicle defect, innocent drivers can be injured or lose their lives. In many of these cases, the drivers could have avoided an accident if he or she knew the vehicle was subject to recall.

Do not risk being one of these news stories. Make sure you know how to check if your vehicle is under recall as well as what to do once you find out.

Check Your Mailbox

When an automotive manufacturer recalls one its cars, it must notify all car owners of the recall by U.S. mail.

While this used to be the best — and only — way to learn about recalls, this method can be very impractical. In many cases, vehicle owners never receive a recall notice because they changed addresses or bought the vehicle secondhand from the original owner.

The good news is that the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) may soon require manufacturers to do more than simply send affected consumers a letter in the mail.

The NHTSA recently proposed a rule that would require automotive manufacturers to send electronic notifications, such as emails, text messages, or even Facebook alerts, in addition to traditional notifications. If the NHTSA’s proposal passes, it could save many lives.

Check the Online Government Database

Fortunately, you do not need to wait for the ruling on whether the NHTSA will require electronic notices. You can check right this very moment. You can also check for potential vehicle safety recalls online.

The NHTSA’s website SaferCar.gov allows you to search by year, make, and model or by VIN (vehicle identification number).

The VIN tool allows you to search recalls dating back 15 years. This is especially helpful if you are not the first owner of the car.

Searching by VIN or make and model is free.

Note: You can find your car’s VIN by looking on your:

  • Vehicle’s title and registration documents
  • Insurance documents
  • Left corner of your windshield
  • Driver’s side door post (where the door latches, close to the seatbelt)
  • Rear wheel well
  • Under the spare tire

And do not worry about checking the site every day. You can sign up to receive email alerts, subscribe to an RSS feed, or download the SaferCar.gov app to stay up to date on any recalls.

What should I do if my car is subject to a recall?

If you find out that your car is part of a recall, follow all instructions on the notice. Stop driving your vehicle (unless otherwise directed in the notice) and get it repaired as soon as possible.

If you did not receive a recall notice until it was too late and you or a loved one was injured in an accident, you could be entitled to compensation. The Atlanta car accident lawyers at the Law Office of Jason R. Schultz, P.C. today can help.

Give us a call today to schedule a free consultation: 404-474-0804.

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