Driver Negligence: How to Prove Fault in an Accident

You’re on your way home from work. You go to make a left turn onto your street when all of a sudden, another driver slams into the side of your vehicle.

Lucky for you, the other car didn’t strike the driver’s side. Your vehicle is going to need a lot of TLC before you can drive it again, though. The only way you’re going to be able to pay for the repairs is if you can prove driver negligence and get compensation for the damages.

We can walk you through the process of proving fault. Lawyer up and check out this guide to get started on your path toward justice.

Why Does Proving Fault Matter?

First of all, why does proving fault matter? You can imagine that the process will be difficult and expensive. You would rather not mess with it if you can help it.

If you live in a fault state, hiring a car accident attorney and taking the matter to court is absolutely worth it. If you can show that you didn’t cause the accident, the other driver’s car insurance company will have to pay for your injuries and vehicle repairs.

Vice versa, if it’s determined that you were at fault, your insurance company will have to pay for the damages. That’s bad news for you.

Those who live in a partial state fault state can also benefit from talking to an attorney. Let’s say that after the crash it was determined that you were 60% at fault and the other driver was 40% at fault. Your insurance company will only have to dish out enough to pay for the 60%.

Providing Proof of Driver Negligence

There are more than a few ways that you can prove driver negligence. The court can make an informed decision based on police reports, photos, vehicle damage, witnesses, and traffic laws.

The more evidence that you can bring to your lawyer, the better. If you don’t know where to begin with gathering your evidence, your attorney can take care of it.

Type of Vehicle Damage

We know car accidents have the potential to really bang up your car and leave it not looking its best. Don’t be so quick to drag it to the auto shop, however.

Take pictures of the vehicle before it looks brand-new again. The type of damage your car suffered from can tell a lot about what happened during the incident.

For example, if your back bumper is caved in, that shows evidence of a rear-end collision. That will put you at a huge advantage in the courtroom.

Police Reports

After road traffic accidents, one of the people that were involved must call the police. Once the officer arrives on the scene, they’ll make a report on the scope of the damage.

They’ll most likely interview you, the other driver, and any witnesses to find out what happened. If the officer feels like one of you violated a road law, they’ll include that in the report.

That’s why you need to get a copy of it. Getting your hands on the report is a simple matter of heading down to the police station after you get your injuries looked at.

Take Photos

You can do a little work to gather evidence before the police arrive. Take out your phone and start taking pictures of the accident scene.

You want to snap pics of the damage from every angle. Leave no detail out. Every skid mark and ignored traffic sign is something that can work in your favor.

Talk to Witnesses

If there’s anyone around during the time of the accident, try to get their contact information before they leave the scene. Their retelling of the events may help you.

The Traffic Laws

When you get home, take out your computer and research the traffic laws in your state. If you can prove that the other driver broke a crucial road law, it will make you look better.

No-Doubt Cases

Of course, the evidence you gather won’t help you if you’re in a no-doubt case. If you cause an accident that involves a rear-end collision or mess up a left turn, you’ll be in serious trouble.

Accidents Involving a Left Turn

If you make a left turn and crash into a car that was going straight, you’re going to be proven at fault almost 99% of the time. The law dictates that the person turning left has to wait until it’s safe to do so.

There are only a few exceptions to this rule. You might be in the clear if the driver going straight was speeding or if they ran a red light.

Rear-End Collisions

It doesn’t matter why another driver stopped, if you speed ahead and rear-end them, it’s your fault. In this instance, photos can be your greatest enemy.

If the front of your car is messed up and the back of the other vehicle is damaged, you’re doomed. Your car insurance company may only have to pay partial compensation if the accident happened at night and you can show that the other driver’s taillights were out.

Prove Fault and Get the Compensation You Deserve

As you can see, proving driver negligence after a car accident isn’t easy. You’re going to need a lot of evidence to show that you didn’t cause the crash.

In some cases, no matter how many pictures you take or what witnesses you talk to, the court may still decide that you caused the problem. Still, it’s better to try and get compensation than to have to pay for all your car repairs out of your own pocket.

For more tips that will help you navigate your way around a courtroom, feel free to explore the rest of our blog.

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