Written on Jul 12, 2013 2:09:00 PM
Auto Accidents and Negligence: When Am I Liable?
A car accident can happen to anyone, and when it does occur, it can quickly turn into a mess without proper knowledge of the road. Every car accident can become a learning experience, but it is best to prepare for anything on the road. Knowing how negligence impacts drivers of vehicles, motorcycles, and bicycles can help you or your loved ones not only drive more carefully on the road, but also understand more of what happens in the road around them.
The Basics of Negligence
Negligence is the basic instance in which an individual failed to do something that they should have done ethically. The standards of negligence are based on what “any” person would do if the time were right. It is not necessarily taking a bullet for someone, but it is not walking away while they are bleeding on the sidewalk, either.
Negligence, in the sense of the law, is when an individual is injured due to someone else’s carelessness, rather than intent. A murder that had been conducted exactly to every planned detail is not negligence; but a car accident caused by drunk driving that resulted in an individual’s paralysis from the waist down is negligence.
Negligence is related to liability through the nature of the fault. If the fault was purposeful, that is another matter entirely; but if the fault was due to an accident or careless behavior, such as texting while driving, then the liability is the driver who was texting, who was too negligent to drive safely.
Liability in a Car Accident
Liability is situational. What may have the liability in one accident may not have the liability in another. There are some situations in which the liability will always be the same party, such as rear end collisions. Sometimes, the liability will be on the employer of the car, and other times the liability will not be on the driver of the car who caused the accident. Every situation is different, and when a car accident occurs, it is best to be prepared. Immediately after a car accident, check to see if everyone is alright. If so, then take pictures of the scene and any damage done. Be sure to take note of the time, the location, and even the weather; any detail is beneficial to your report to the police and the insurance company.
When proving that it was not your fault in a car accident, it is crucial that you provide the evidence supporting your claim. Official evidence as recognized by the law and insurance companies includes:
- Accurate police reports
- Specific laws of the state
- Damage done by rear end accidents and left-turn collisions
It is recommended to keep a small notebook in your car in the event of note taking.
For an example of a “liability answer sheet,” the basics begin with who is driving the car at fault. If an employee got into a car accident, the liability is in the hands of the individual’s employer. If said car accident was due to reckless driving toward a destination that was not part of the job, then the driver would be liable. If an individual lets their friend drive their car and the friend causes a car accident, then it is, in most cases, the owner of the car who is liable because they allowed the driver behind the wheel.
Liability and negligence are all about the situation. Be sure to know every fact about your situation, and obtain as much information as possible.
Contact Us Today
Our personal injury attorneys here at Lowman Law showcase advanced experience in the field and can help you or your loved ones in the event of injury due to an accident. Our practice includes car accidents, but also motorcycle, trucking, golf cart, bicycle, and pedestrian accidents. We are also here for you in the event of a slip and fall, a wrongful death, dog bite injuries, or nursing home negligence. Speaking with a lawyer now can help you find justice in your personal injury experience. Contact us today for a free consultation.