When is a Rear End Collision Not Your Fault in California?
Most people have heard that the rear driver is always at fault in a rear-end accident. When you think about it, this makes sense. The rear driver is the last person who can stop the crash. If they weren’t going too fast, they wouldn’t have had trouble slowing down in time. If they were paying attention to the road in front of then, they would see your red brake lights. It seems as if it would be a no-brainer. However, there are times when the court may find that you were partly at fault for the accident. If that’s the case, your damages are going to be reduced accordingly. If the court finds that you were than 50% at fault, you won’t get anything. To help prevent this from happening you should reach out to an experienced California personal injury lawyer.
The General Rule is that the Rear Driver is Liable
As mentioned above, the general rule of thumb is that the rear driver is always at fault. They have the last clear chance of avoiding the collision. While this is the case, your California personal injury lawyer will need to prove the defendant was at fault. They’ll do this by proving negligence:
- The defendant owed you a duty of care – All drivers owe people on the road a certain level of care. At a minimum, they need to follow all the traffic laws.
- They breached this duty – If you have proof that the other driver did something they shouldn’t done, they’ll be held liable. This could be the hardest part of your case. Your California personal injury lawyer needs to submit evidence that they were acting recklessly or broke a local traffic law.
- You were hurt – As long as you have medical records to show your injuries, this shouldn’t be difficult to do.
- Your injuries were caused by the accident: As long as you can show that the injuries were caused by the accident, they should to.
Once your California personal injury has demonstrated negligence, you can turn to the issue of damages.
What Defenses Can the Other Driver Raise?
Once your attorney has proven your case, the defendant gets a chance to disprove it. They can offer their own evidence or they can poke holes in you case. Either way, their goal will be to show that your evidence isn’t relevant and, as a whole, be declared inadmissible.
You Should Call and Discuss Your Case with an Experienced California Personal Injury Lawyer
There’s nothing wrong with trying to handle your car accident case by yourself. There’s certainly no law that says you need to be represented by a California personal injury lawyer. There are times, however, when it would be in your best interest to have an attorney by your side.
If your auto insurance claim has been denied, a skilled California personal injury lawyer can help. They’ll help appeal your claim and negotiate payment of your claim. If this doesn’t work, they’ll offer to file a personal injury lawsuit against the other driver. It all depends on the facts of your case.
All you have to do is call our office and speak with one of our attorneys. Set up a time to come in for your free, initial consultation. They’ll sit down with you and review your claim. They’ll also review the police report to see what the officers found at the scene. If it appears the other driver was at fault, your California personal injury lawyer will fight to get you the compensation you deserve.