I was recently involved in a car accident. Unfortunately, since it was my first accident, I was scatter-brained and anxious. What I did not realize at the time was that the actions you take immediately after the accident can affect a personal injury case and the outcome of that case. I wanted to find a way to share my experiences and mistakes with other. Since the Internet is so popular, I figured this would be a great way to do so. While you likely aren't planning on being in an accident soon, if you are, hopefully you remember some of the tips I share on this website.
Did you get into a car accident where you hit a driver from behind? If so, you may have assumed that you will automatically be assigned fault for causing the accident and not try to fight it. While these cases are tough to prove, you have a chance of fighting it in court. Here are some things to know about fault in these types of collisions.
Prove The Other Driver Was Negligent
The first defense that you should look into is if the other driver was negligent in any way. As a driver, they have a duty of care to drive safely. It's not only important to keep yourself safe while driving but to keep other drivers safe as well. This defense is often used in cases where a driver was unexpectedly cut off.
A good example would be if someone pulled out into traffic without giving enough space for the driver they are merging in front of. If cars are traveling too fast or there is not enough room, that may make it impossible for the driver to merge into traffic safely. Hitting this driver from behind would not necessarily be your fault since they had a duty of care to merge safely.
Negligence can also happen when a driver is trying to avoid something in the road and merge into your lane unexpectedly. They have a duty to protect themselves by slamming on the brakes and staying in their lane, and you need to give enough distance between vehicles to brake in time to avoid a collision. This is not possible if they swerve in front of your car and slam on the brakes.
Prove the Other Driver Broke The Law
Another defense would be if the driver in front of you did something that broke the law and caused the accident. This can happen if a driver merges lanes and goes in front of you, but they crossed a double solid white line. This means that they are not allowed to change lanes at the time, which is usually when going around a curve or a tricky part of traffic. If the other driver breaks the law by merging lanes and then does something to cause them to stop suddenly, you could argue that the driver should have never been in your lane in the first place to cause the accident.
When in doubt about if you are responsible, work with an auto accident law attorney in your area for assistance.