Rear-End Collision Lawyers
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What Is a Rear-End Collision?
A rear-end collision occurs when one car strikes collides into the back of another car. This often happens when one car is stopped at an intersection and the other car approaches too quickly. It can also happen when both cars are moving and the lead car stops suddenly (this can happen when the rear driver follows too close to the front car), which can then result in a chain reaction car accident with the cars following the secondary car crashing into the secondary car because they are also unable to stop in time.
Rear-end accidents generally result in a damages award paid from the party responsible for the accident to the victim. This can cover medical expenses, car repairs, and other costs. There is a well-known presumption that cars that rear-end other cars are automatically at fault. The car that rear-ended the other car had a chance to prevent the accident and so that car should bear the responsibility. However, this presumption can be rebutted with the right arguments and evidence.
Who Is At Fault in a Rear-End Collision?
Rear-end collision fault refers to which party is responsible for the accident. In many cases, it’s the driver behind the other one that’s at fault. This can happen due to:
- Speeding (driving above the speed limit)
- Driving too close to the other car
- Distracted driving (i.e., texting while driving, etc.)
In some cases, it may the front car driver who is actually at fault. For instance, they may be driving much too slowly, or they may have taken an unwarranted stop in the middle of a highway. Drunk driving can also be a factor for both parties. Also there can be instances where the front driver’s brake lights did not properly function or even suddenly reversed to hit the car or cars behind him or her. In those situations, the front driver may have some comparative or contributory negligence in the collision that would reduce or eliminate their monetary recovery.
In other cases, neither party can be held liable. An example of this is when there are extremely poor weather conditions, or when there is a mechanical failure in one of the cars.
What Is Careless Driving?
Careless driving or reckless driving can sometimes be the cause of a rear-end collision. Careless driving is where the driver operates the vehicle in a manner that blatantly disregards the safety of others. Many instances of careless driving involve intentional conduct.
For instance, performing "stunts" while driving or pulling dangerous maneuvers can endanger the lives and safety of other drivers and pedestrians. Racing other drivers is another example of careless driving. If careless driving leads to a rear-end collision, the legal penalties may increase, and criminal charges may also be brought.
How Do I File a Lawsuit in a Rear-End Collision?
Rear-end collisions lawsuits need to be filed in a timely manner after the accident occurs and before the statute of limitations has expired. If a party waits too long in bringing a lawsuit, they may risk missing important filing deadlines, as the statute of limitations will run.
The people involved in the lawsuit should also compile important information related to the accident, including names, contact info of parties, descriptions of the event, and any testimony of witnesses. Providing pictures and/or video of the accident can also provide much needed evidence for the lawsuit.
In additions, there can be many different parties involved in the rear-end collisions especially when there are multiple cars that were damaged because of the collision. These can include insurance companies, other injured parties, automobile mechanics, and car manufacturers.
Are There Any Car Accident Defenses?
There are times when rear-end collisions occur because there was another driver at fault which caused you to rear-end another car. In this situation, the driver would be released from liability if they can prove that they were not at fault. Some rear-end collision defenses may include:
- Lack of proof: If one or more of the elements of negligence cannot be proven there is not enough evidence to prove liability.
- Emergencies: Some cases result in a dropped or lowered sentence if the accident involved emergency conditions.
- Contributory or Comparative Negligence: Some jurisdictions don’t allow a plaintiff to recover damages if they contributed to their own injury. In other areas, the damages are reduced proportionately.
- Assumption of Risk: It can sometimes be a defense if it can be shown that the other driver knew of a certain risk and still acted in spite of the risk.
- Last Clear Chance: In some states, if the other driver has a last clear chance to prevent the accident, but failed to take that chance, it may relieve the defendant from liability.
- Brake Lights Were not functioning properly
- The driver makes a sudden stop to make a turn
- The driver suddenly reverses
What Are the Legal Consequences for Rear End Collisions?
Rear end collisions can be very expensive to a driver because sometimes they rear end a car in front of them and it causes a domino effect, which damages other cars in front. Rear-end collisions can sometimes result in a civil lawsuit for damages. In such cases, the liable party may be responsible for reimbursing the victim for losses including:
- Costs associated with any injuries (hospital costs, etc.)
- Damage to the car or other property
- Various other costs
- In some cases, criminal penalties can also result (especially for cases involving drunk driving).
Do I Need a Lawyer for Help With Rear-End Collision Laws?
Rear end accidents can sometimes be difficult to sort out, especially if there are multiple drivers and passengers involved. You may wish to hire a qualified personal injury lawyer who can help you file your case and guide you through the process. Your attorney will be able to provide you with advice and legal arguments to help you obtain the appropriate legal remedy for your circumstances.
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Last Modified: 09-29-2015 10:40 AM PDT
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