Determining accident liability will help an accident victim understand who is liable for his or her injuries. This requires a careful assessment of all available evidence, witness testimony and other relevant factors. An injury attorney can help a victim identify all liable parties and hold them accountable in an injury claim or lawsuit.
Assessing Evidence to Determine Accident Liability
Evidence is one of the key ways in which police, insurers, attorneys and victims can determine who is at fault for an accident.In the case of a serious car wreck, relevant evidence may include:
- police reports – these may include important details such as the estimated rate of speed of both vehicles, the final resting position of all vehicles and whether any of the drivers were intoxicated at the time of the crash.
- photos of the accident scene – things like vehicle damage, roadway hazards and tire marks can help illustrate what led to an injury crash.
- witness testimony – witnesses may be able to provide critical evidence of why the crash occurred, such as testimony that one driver crossed the centerline or that the liable driver was looking down at a smart phone just before the crash.
- wrecked vehicle and components – a damaged or destroyed vehicle may provide clues about an accident’s cause, such as faulty brake lines, defective tires and other factors.
Some types of auto accidents are easier to assess than others. Rear-end collisions and left-turn crashes almost always indicate a clear-cut case of negligence and driver liability. In a rear-end collision, the driver at the rear is often found to be at fault for the crash.
This is because all drivers are required to leave a safe following distance between vehicles. Likewise, a driver that is turning left must yield to oncoming traffic. A failure to do so may indicate negligence. There are, however, exceptions to these cases.
It is best practice to reserve all forms of evidence after an accident. Each piece may help determine and prove liability.
Holding a Negligent Party Liable in an Accident Claim
A victim who can successfully prove another person was at fault for the accident may pursue compensation in an injury claim or lawsuit. This will require compelling evidence that proves both negligence (fault) and damages (injuries).
Compensation may be available to address:
- physical therapy;
- pain and suffering;
- lost wages;
- costs to retrofit a home or van to be accessible (in the event of a disabling injury);
- hospital and medical expenses; and
- other accident-related costs, such as having to hire housekeeping assistance or in-home nursing care.
Do you have questions about who is liable for your accident and injuries? An attorney from the Law Office of Julie Johnson can help you determine the responsible parties and hold them accountable in an injury claim or lawsuit. Schedule a free consultation by calling 214-290-8001. Or complete this confidential online contact form to learn more about your rights.