Who’s to Blame in a Car Accident?
Who is responsible in a car accident? Well typically the responsible party in the car accident is the party that committed a wrong.
For example if an individual runs a red-light and hits someone in the intersection, the person who ran the red light is the wrongdoer and is going to be responsible for your injuries.
Same thing if someone runs a stop sign or crosses the center lane or hits a pedestrian in a crosswalk, the negligent party is the person responsible for your injuries following a car accident. Now that person is according to Florida law responsible for having car insurance.
It is usually the insurance company which ultimately is going to pay for your damages. There are some circumstances where we file a lawsuit against a negligent party in the car accident, that their insurance may not cover all of your damages all of your injuries.
And in that situation we sometimes can pursue them individually meaning pursue them beyond the coverage. What this sometimes leads to is the insurance company paying even beyond their coverage to make sure their client is taken care of.
What is a Car Accident?
When I talk about a car accident, a car accident describes any accident that takes place in a car, involving a car hitting something, rolling over something, running directly into something, skidding into something, colliding with something.
A car accident specifically causes an injury, death, or damage to someone or something. A car accident is a civil action where a legal notice is given to formalize a complaint to appear in court to:
- determine who is at fault
- determine what court judgment or informal or formal settlement will be made to resolve the civil dispute
A car accident refers to a vehicle driven by a person that hits something else. A car is a motorized vehicle that may be an SUV, a van, or a pickup that is involved in an accident.
The most common car accidents include:
- a car running a red light or a stop light and running into another car
- a car crosses the median and hits another car
- a car rear-ends another car from behind
A car accident may also include a car hitting:
- other vehicles
- large trucks (like a semi-truck or a tractor-trailer)
A car accident can involve a car hitting people, vehicles, structures or animals with severe injuries or death occurring. A car accident is a collision between a car and another vehicle, a person, an animal, or an object.
A car accident can occur without a person driving:
- a car parking brake doesn’t work and the car strikes something or someone
- a computer malfunction occurs and a car revs, rolls, starts, moves and hits someone or something
- a car can drag someone or something while rolling down a hill or sliding in water, mud, ice, snow or other act of nature
A car accident may involve you being hurt due to the movement of a car from a swerve, a loss of control, hitting water, ice, gravel. Something may hit a person coming through the window, floor, ceiling, door to injure you where you are inside a vehicle.
You don’t have to be the driver to be in a car accident. Passengers may be injured due to another vehicle striking the car. You can be a pedestrian, a skater, on a bike or in a place where you are hit by a car, an SUV, a van or a pickup truck.
Maybe you’re in your home and a car smashes through your living room. You could be on a bike trail and a car goes off the road and hits you on your bike or while you’re walking. Maybe you’re in an open market and a car or SUV or pickup or van hits you.
A car accident describes the mode of transportation involved in an instance where a person was hurt because of the car which was the cause or mode of transportation involved in a crash.
You may be sitting at a stop sign and another car slams into you. You may be crossing an intersection and another vehicle—a van, truck or train hits your car. You may be sideswiped, hit in a head-on collision in another vehicle.
A car accident involves a car hitting someone or something and causing damage in a motorized vehicle. The cause of the car accident is what is usually disputed in a personal injury case because there are many factors to determine who or what is to blame in a car accident.
Trying to prove or handle a car accident without an attorney in the state of Florida or anywhere else is not a good idea. The insurance company hires the best Florida attorney for a car accident and so should you.
The insurance company is often the party that will pay for damages and as one of the largest and oldest industries in the United States, it is not a good idea to try to negotiate anything with an insurance company.
What Causes a Car Accident?
According to the Florida DMV, in Florida, there are close to 250,000 car accidents every year.
The Florida DMV says that the No. 1 cause of a car accident careless driving among the state’s 16 million drivers who are involved in more than 200,000 car accidents annually.
This could mean that the driver was speeding and couldn’t stop in time, the driver lost control of the car, or misjudged a turn.
Reasons for car accidents:
- Drunk driving
- Car malfunction
- Gawking at accidents
- Driving while tired
- Distracted driving
- Bad weather
- Tuning sound system
You Can Help Prevent Car Accidents
All of the above activities should be avoided. While you might feel that you can go a few miles over the speed limit, text at the light, drive home from the corner bar, every time that you take a risk you’re increasing the amount of time that you’ll need to slow, stop or get control of your vehicle. Any of the above activities could cause a car accident and can be avoided.
If you’re driving the speed limit and someone is honking at you to speed up, you should signal to move over and get out of the way. Don’t slow down, slam your brakes or try to keep a car from passing you. If they want to speed, let them speed and let them pass so that you don’t increase the chance of causing what’s known as road rage.
The second most common cause of a car accident in Florida is distracted driving. Texting while driving is against the law in Florida. You can be fined and ticketed if you’re caught texting while driving. What a driver may see as inattention can actually be considered negligence and could draw civil penalties.
Criminal Penalties with Car Accidents
Criminal penalties and civil lawsuits can follow a car accident. If a victim dies, the victim’s family can file a wrongful death lawsuit.
Criminal penalties may include vehicular manslaughter, manslaughter particularly if a driver caused an accident while under the influence.
Drunk drivers can get prison, penalties, loss of license, suspended license, required breathalyzer on vehicle starter. If driver charged with DUI or DWI is fatal, criminal charges can include involuntary manslaughter, vehicular manslaughter, manslaughter.