Car accidents can be uncomplicated situations, or they can be incredibly sticky messes that need to be sorted out. Fault is generally the biggest issue to untangle after an accident. One driver can be entirely responsible for causing the collision, but in many cases both drivers can be found partially at fault. So how exactly can you tell whether you were at fault or partially at fault for the accident? As a car accident lawyer can explain, here are some key indicators.
Negligence is an action that ignores safety rules and places others at risk. On the road, negligence can be a number of different factors, such as:
- Putting on makeup
- Driving recklessly
- Driving intoxicated
- Simply not paying attention
If an act of negligence comes to mind when you think back right before the accident happened, then it is entirely possible you were at fault for the crash. However, the other driver may have also done something that places them at fault, so don’t admit it to the police or insurance until you can speak to an attorney.
2. Typical Faulty Situations
Sometimes accidents happen because of human error and poor judgements without the interference of negligence. The majority of accidents involve the same scenarios because they automatically come with greater risks. Making a left-hand turn is a perfect example, as it can be easy to misjudge the distance between you and an oncoming car. Another example is rear-ending another vehicle, which can happen due to negligence, but is almost always the fault of the person who strikes the car in front of them.
3. Traffic Citations
If you receive a ticket from the responding police officer at the scene, that can be a good indication they think you are at fault. It does not necessarily mean that insurance will come to that same conclusion, which is why you shouldn’t admit guilt even when you’re given the citation. However, insurance companies may still look at the officer’s report for evidence, so you need to gather your own to prove otherwise.
4. Witness Statements
If anyone who saw the accident says that you caused it, that’s a pretty good sign you’re liable. You can always collect your own evidence to prove them wrong (eyewitness accounts are not always reliable), but you will have an uphill battle to make your claim.
Talk to a car accident lawyer if you are struggling to prove your innocence in a claim. You may need their professional advice to get yourself out of this difficult situation.