Chrysler and General Motors bankruptcies may have a consequence that comes out of left field and hits current vehicle owners in the head. If approved, consumers will lose the right to sue the automaker if a factory defect results in death or injury on any vehicle purchased before the bankruptcy goes through.
Consumer advocates say that means if a seatbelt or anything else on the car fails, even though you may be hurt or even dead, you and your family will not be able to hold the car company accountable in a court of law.
Consumers who purchase a new car after the companies emerge from bankruptcy under new ownership would not lose their right to sue.
The Center for Auto Safety, National Association for Consumer Advocates, and Public Citizen, among others, all joined in on an appeal to a New York federal bankruptcy court Wednesday trying to overturn the Court's previous decision in the Chrysler case.
Obscure Vehicle Code Of The Month
Well, we've run out of slang terms so we're moving onto something even better: vehicle codes that hopefully you're not violating. If you are, take this as a warning.
Alaska Statute 28.35.320: A person in possession of a motor vehicle under an agreement in writing that requires the person to return the vehicle to a particular place or at a particular time who refuses or wilfully neglects to return it to the place and at the time specified in the agreement in writing with the intent to deprive the owner of the vehicle or to convert it to the person's own use, or who secretes, converts, sells, or attempts to sell the vehicle or any part of it is, upon conviction, punishable by imprisonment for not more than five years, or by a fine of not more than $1,000, or by both.
Just in case you got your brain scrambled from all the legalese, this code basically says it is illegal to not return a rental car to the rental company after you're done thrashing it in the snow.