Have you been involved in a traffic accident? What procedure is used to determine who is at fault?
Identifying who is at fault in a traffic accident all comes down to who was careless. For car accidents, there is a set of official rules that tell people how they are supposed to drive and guidelines that can be used to measure liability.
They are basically rules that everyone must learn before they can get their driver’s license. Each state has its own vehicle code and they apply not only to cars but to pedestrians, bicycles and motorcycles.
Sometimes when one of these rules is violated, it is usually assumed to be the cause of the accident. For instance, if you run a stop sign and you cause a traffic accident, automatically you will be held liable for the injuries that result.
In other circumstances, it’s not apparently obvious whether the traffic accident was caused by a violation of the traffic rules. An example would be when two drivers merge into the same lane in traffic. The law of negligence in this case is what will be used to determine who is at fault. If a cyclist, pedestrian or driver is “negligent” they will have to take partial responsibility for the accident.
Typically, three elements are used to determine who is at fault in traffic accidents:
- The conduct of the driver is what caused the injury
- The cyclist, pedestrian or driver was not reasonably careful
- The driver was not reasonably careful in a particular situation such as stopping at a red light or at a zebra crossing
If you are rear-ended, it is always that driver’s fault; it does not matter why you decided to stop. One of the basic rules of driving on the road is that a driver must drive at a safe distance behind the vehicle in front of him. This allows him to stop safely when the car in front suddenly stops.
In some cases, you might be rear ended because a third car pushed the car behind you into your rear end. If this happens, the driver in the third car will be held liable.
Making a left turn is almost always the cause for traffic accidents but there are certain exceptions:
- You started making a left turn when it was safe to do so but something made you slow down or stop
- The vehicle going straight ran a red light
- The car going straight was over speeding.
Whatever the factors that might have contributed to the accident, the law requires that you wait until it is safe to complete the turn before moving in front of oncoming traffic. The damage to both your car and the victim’s make it hard not to argue that the accident happened during a left turn.
What Should You Do If You Are Involved In A Traffic Accident?
The first thing that you should do is go to the hospital and get treated for any injuries; whether minor or serious. Try to take as many notes as you can about the accident as soon as you can. Take photos and speak to witnesses who were at the scene of the crime.
The main purpose of collecting as much information about the crash as you can is to make your claim process go a lot smoother. It will also increase your chances of receiving compensation. The notes will also help you remember what you went through.
Take daily notes of how your injuries affect you. Write about any pain that you experience, loss of sleep, anxiety or any other problems which may not be physically visible.
Hiring A Plymouth Car Crash Attorney
The emotional and physical toll of a traffic accident can leave someone feeling desperate and helpless. Our job at Kevin P Landry law offices is to take care of your claim and ensure you receive adequate compensation.
We have an office located in Plymouth so this should make it easy for you to schedule your first meeting with us. We can visit you in the hospital, in your own home or you can call us at 508-746-2700. Our initial consultations are always free of charge.