Size. Strength.
Resources. Reputation.

What happens during a vehicle recall?

On Behalf of | Mar 5, 2024 | Defective Products & Machinery |

A vehicle recall is a process initiated by either an automobile manufacturer or a government agency to address a safety issue or defect that could potentially endanger the public. This procedure is essential to automotive safety oversight, helping to ensure that manufacturers correct such defects without cost to the consumer.

Vehicle recalls are typically triggered by the discovery of defects that violate safety standards or malfunctions that pose significant risks to drivers, passengers and others on the road. Understanding the steps involved in a vehicle recall can help consumers navigate the process more effectively.

Identification of a defect

The recall process begins with the identification of a safety defect. This can occur through various means, including internal testing by the manufacturer, consumer complaints, reports from dealerships or oversight by government agencies such as the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).

Notification to vehicle owners

Once a recall decision is made, the manufacturer must notify all registered owners and purchasers of the affected vehicles. This notification, often sent by mail to the last registered owner’s known address, must include:

  • Description of the defect
  • Risks or hazards posed by the defect
  • Potential warning signs
  • Plan to fix the problem
  • Instructions for the next steps owners should take
  • Warning if the vehicle isn’t safe to drive

This communication is crucial for ensuring vehicle owners know the vital recall information and understand how to proceed.

Repairing the defect

Manufacturers are required to fix the problem at no cost to the vehicle owner. This usually involves taking the vehicle to an authorized dealer who will make the necessary repairs or replacements. The solutions can range from minor adjustments to significant parts replacements. In some cases, if the vehicle can’t be safely repaired, the manufacturer may offer to repurchase the vehicle or replace it with a similar model.

Injuries caused by defective vehicle components can be catastrophic. The victims of these situations may opt to pursue a compensation claim. Legal action can include claims for medical expenses, missed wages and other costs directly related to injury caused by a defective vehicle.

Over 250 Million Dollars In Verdicts & Settlements


Construction Site Accident


Wrongful Death


Football Injury


Construction Accident


Motorcycle Accident