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TexLaw, Attorney
Category: Business Law
Satisfied Customers: 4430
Experience:  Internationational Commercial Attorney
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Ford F250 XLT: I have safety concern about my Ford F250. I

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I have safety concern about my Ford F250. I was in a pretty serious auto accident three weeks after I bought it. A lady T-boned me and the rear right quarter of the cab had to be cut out and replaced, along with the rear right rocker panel and floorboard and half of the bed had to be replaced. I am in a court case right now and I hired a diminution in value professional and he indicated my truck lost $20K in value because of the extensive damage my truck incurred ($9789 worth of damage), and of course the insurance company's professional is saying there was on $4300 diminution. I am also concerned about the safety of my truck since the cab was reconstructed and I feel the integrity of the truck’s cab has been compromised and it is not as safe as it was when it left the factory. Any advice, recommendations or know of anyone who can answer my question about the safety of my truck would be very much appreciated. I am concerned my truck's safety integrity has been compromised as the right rear of the cab, floor board, rocker panel and half of the bed had to be replaced. I don't believe second hand welds are not as good as the factory, and crumple zones may have been affected. Ford will not talk to me about it because it is already i arbitration. Any advicem, recommendations, or if you know of someone else who could testify to the safety of my truck would be very much appreciated. Thank you.

Thank you for your question. I'm very happy to hear that you are pursuing a diminution in value claim, as these claims often go unaddressed and insurance company's get away without paying them.

That being said, the reduction in the safety integrity of your truck is not a damage claim that stands alone, it is in fact part of the diminution in value. In other words, the reduction in safety integrity due to the secondary welds is a factor in considering how much value your truck has lost because of the wreck. So, in short, your diminution in value expert should be able to testify regarding this matter and use it as a justification in support of the $20k reduction, giving the jury a reason to believe your expert over the insurance company's.

Please let me know if you have further questions.

Customer: replied 4 years ago.

In legal terms, what is considered functional as far as a vehicle is concerned? He testified that the doors are not considered functional? He says that functional parts of the vehicle are the engine, tranny, electrical, etc.

Who said this to you, your expert or theirs?

There is no law that controls what is or is not considered a "functional" part of the vehicle. Rather, this term is something that is debated between the experts on the case and would be defined by diminished valuation standards. However, I would argue that "functional" is a complete misnomer. A door is certainly functional (it opens and closes and serves a function), which it may not have any core operational value to the vehicle function.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

That was their professional. I agree that does not make the vehicle run, but I too believe would be considered functional. They do open and close, which serves as a function, but it protects it's occupants as a shield is my argument, but their expert insists it is not make the truck do what it is supposed to do, which is run, and drive.


Are there anyt specific questions that you would ask their professional and I could tell my attorney to ask at arbitration. My expert was proven wrong on one that that he suggested, in that my truck was a unibody frame. Their attorney made a joke out of my expert and said he is a fool if he thinks my truck was a unibody. I am not sure how much that will discredit my expert. Any ideas if you were my attorney you would use to thow their professsional's credability out the door?

Honestly, that is impossible for me to answer, because I don't know anything about what the other expert has said and I don't know much about your case.

However, I would start off by hammering him on his valuations and ask where he gets the values. He likely relies on some kind of software. I'd ask him about whether he was provided that software by the insurance company. I'd ask him if he knows anything about how that software determines the costs and values and ask him if he did any independent variation of the software's value determinations (i.e., did he ever call and try to get anything for the same value).

I'd also hit him on the door and functional claim. Ask him if he'd change his mind about the functionality of a door if he had his infant strapped into the seat where there isn't a door.

In the end, because you are in an arbitration, the experts credibility and background will go along way in persuading the arbitrators. Your attorney needs to take a long look at some of the other expert's prior testimony to see if there can be any inconsistencies that he can seize on.

Good Luck,
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Much of their experts opinions and such came from articles from the internet, of which he didn't cite nor did he know of the author's experiences and training. My attorney drilled him on that, His attorney said mine was harrassing his client because their expert was getting confused and was gettng frustrated and wanted to leave. My attorney said, "sir, you will not leave until we are finished here". After that, his anwers became vague if he answered them at all. His attorney kept saying something like, " objection to form", and he did not answer. That is an awesome idea on the baby in the carseat. Any idea where I might be able to get some answers about the structural integrity of the cab now that it has been cut and welded twice? The body shop that fixed it is protecting themselves by saying they repaired it to standards, but they won't say whether or not it is as safe as it was from the factory. I am saying it is not. And I am arguing that we are talking about the safety of my family, but that question will not be answered until something happens and we are involved in a rollover accident and then it could be too late.


If I have other quesgtions later, will the question go to you or another attorney? If it went to another attorney, is there a way that I could get in contact with you

I'd have to say that you would need to hire a vehicle structural integrity expert to give you more precise information. I'm not certain on where you could find any sort of other information other than on the internet.

It sounds like your attorney did a good job. I hope your claim works out.

If you have other questions, just find my profile and click on "ask a question." Then at the beginning of the question write "For ZDNLaw". That will get the question to me.

Please remember to rate my answer positively as I don't receive compensation for my work on your question until you do.

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