When an auto accident happens, in most places the at-fault motorist is financially liable for the injuries and damages that occur as a result. Practically speaking, it’s the at-fault party’s insurer who covers injury claims and the driver pays in the form of a higher monthly premium. However, rules and laws on car accidents differ depending on location. Also, injury claims can be affected if multiple parties are responsible and msthey work differently in no-fault states. Here is a closer look at issues pertaining to assertive representation for an auto accident case.
Finding Fault in a Car Accident
If a person lives in a fault state, proving liability and fault in a car accident are crucial to the success of a case. Sometimes it’s easy to prove fault but other times it’s not so clear. In order to do so, an injured party must receive skilled representation and prove the below elements.
A legal obligation or duty: in car accident cases, the duty is owed by all drivers to everyone else on the road. All motorists must operate their vehicles with a reasonable amount of care.
Breach of duty: the plaintiff must prove that the defendant did not fulfill their duty. A “reasonable person” standard is used to determine breach of duty. If a reasonable person would have acted more carefully under the same circumstances, the driver can be considered negligent. Proof of a traffic citation can help to establish a breach of duty.
Injury as a result of the breach: it’s not enough for a driver to be negligent; the negligence has to have been a proximate cause of the crash.
If a person shares blame for the accident, it can affect the compensation they’re eligible to receive. In some instances, injured claimants can’t recover at all if they share responsibility for a crash. Shared faults effects depend on state law; in a few states, a person who is even one percent responsible for an accident is barred from receiving compensation.
In some states, also, an injured driver goes to his or her own insurer after a car crash, no matter who was at fault. The only way a person can go outside the system and sue the at-fault driver is if the case approaches the serious injury threshold set forth by the state. A car accident attorney can provide assertive representation for auto accident cases and determine whether it meets that standard.