Minnesota law fails to protect consumers

edit_IMG_3014The right front wheel on  my Ford Fusion fell off after 67,120 miles. This failure was not normal wear and tear and not due to an accident. Instead, the ball joint cracked and the wheel fell off, bringing my car to a screeching, uncontrolled stop. Fortunately, I was going rather slowly and was not hurt.

I felt the axle to the car was defective when it was purchased, and Ford was negligent in manufacturing my vehicle with this part. In my experience metal parts do not spontaneously crack unless a defect is present. Ford refused to accept any responsibility, and I filed a small claims conciliation court case against Ford. The trial took place Friday, August 25, 2017 and here is what I learned:

  • Minnesota law does not allow a claim of negligence against a manufacturer if the only damage is property damage. Had I been injured or killed then I would have had a potential negligence claim against Ford.
  • Ford has done an effective job of limiting their exposure through carefully worded warranty statements that restrict claims that may be brought against them under Minnesota law, including the implied warranty of fitness for a particular purpose and merchantability.

I lost the case, and I believe the judge correctly decided the case according to Minnesota law. However, it doesn’t make me feel better, and next time I buy a car, it will very likely not be a Ford.

About Mark Mizen

At Creative Memories, I evaluate photographic products and related materials so that today's memories are not lost to the future and then communicate this information to Creative Memories Consultants and their customers. My interests extend from preservation of traditional photographs to the production of photo books to the expected longevity of electronic image files. My long-term objective is to direct the development of technology that meets consumers needs for high-quality products.
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2 Responses to Minnesota law fails to protect consumers

  1. Kathy Baids says:

    Glad you were not injured!!!

    Too bad about your court case. I loved my Ford Expedition for 14 years and 225,000 miles!

  2. Sandra Lyons says:

    Glad you were safe. But if you weren’t aware, FORD stands for Fix Or Repair Daily OR Found On Road Dead. Shared with me by a proud Mustang owner many years ago (not telling you how many but it was the ORIGINAL Mustang) and guess what? We broke down at the Road Rally at Elkhart Lake WI! So it IS true.

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