How Is Fault Determined in a Car Accident Case?

How Is Fault Determined in a Car Accident Case

Thousands of car accidents happen all over the United States every day. They are caused by a wide array of different factors, including distracted driving, vehicle malfunction, driving under the influence, climatic conditions, and many more.

When it comes to the validity of an insurance or compensation claim, determining fault for a car accident is a critical factor. When it comes to calculating driver culpability, there are several factors that insurers will consider. For additional information on fault determination after being involved in a car accident, visit:

Factors Determining Driver Culpability

Police Reports – One of the most important sources of information when determining fault is police reports. The first step that an insurance company usually takes when assessing claims is to look at the accident report that is generated by the authority that responded to the incident. Police reports will contain information about all the critical elements of the crash, including speed, the direction of travel, location, the area of impact on the vehicle(s), as well as the make, model and color of the vehicles.

Lawful Driving – The police report will also contain information regarding the drivers’ blood alcohol levels and whether any of the drivers involved were deemed to have been breaking the law. If a driver is found to have been breaking any of the state laws at the time of the accident, insurance companies reserve the right to void a claim.

Negligent Driving – Drivers who are found to have been driving negligently are seen to be at fault in the event of an accident. Negligent driving may be attributed to a driver if they were engaged in any of the following activities while behind the wheel:

  • Tailgating
  • Failing to give way at a junction
  • Dangerous overtaking
  • Operating a GPS device or adjusting in-car entertainment
  • Eating or drinking
  • Failing to signal or stop at a stop sign
  • Smoking
  • Reaching for items

Why You Should Hire an Attorney

If you have been involved in a road traffic accident, you should waste no time in hiring a lawyer who is experienced at litigating road traffic accident cases. After the crash has been reported to the relevant authorities and an accident report has been generated, attorneys can offer you invaluable advice on how to proceed, no matter whether you were at fault and need to prepare a defense or another driver was at fault and you need to prove their culpability to support an insurance claim or a personal injury claim.

You will need to be prepared for the fact that the other driver’s insurance company will likely try to pin the blame on you in order to avoid paying out. An attorney will leave no stone unturned as they look for evidence to support your case. If you have a legitimate case, they will then send the findings of their investigation to the other party’s insurance company in order to prove the ways in which their client is liable. If the work is done properly, this will result in a favorable settlement which avoids a costly trial.