Are You at Fault if Someone Pulls out in Front of You?
Driving is inherently dangerous. Compared to boats, planes, and trains, cars are the deadliest form of transportation. Car accidents killed nearly 50,000 Americans in one recent year. Along with reckless and chaotic driving, the ubiquity of automotive accidents brought about traffic laws at the beginning of the twentieth century. Traffic laws vary from state to state and from country to country. These intricacies complicate the experiences of drivers and pedestrians.
In particular, culpability concerning crashes is not always so cut-and-dry. Generally, you are responsible if you rear-end someone, but what if another person’s aggressive brake-checking caused you to crash into that person’s car?
If someone brake-checks you, that person may incur some blame for a crash, especially in Missouri, where any driving behavior threatening others’ safety is illegal. Explicit examples include brake-checking and tailgating. If a brake checker injured you in Missouri, then the right car accident lawyer could clarify this to a jury and provide the compensation you deserve.
Should I File a Lawsuit?
Not all car accidents need to escalate to lawsuits. Often, an insurance company resolves any claims with a settlement negotiation between the two parties. If you cannot settle, then you can proceed with a lawsuit.
Disputes over fault are the primary impetus for most cases that evolve into lawsuits. With its fault determination, an insurance company may immediately establish fault for an accident. For example, the tailgater always bears responsibility in instances of rear-ending.
If an insurance company won’t offer appropriate compensation for your injuries, take legal action. If your injuries are severe enough, the compensation you receive may not cover your expenses.
In such a case, seek legal action. You are not seeking revenge or riches; you seek the necessities to live your life. To the best of its ability, an insurance company must place you under the same circumstances you enjoyed before your accident. If it cannot do this, take legal action and leave the matters of fault and compensation up to a court of law.
When Do I Need a Lawyer?
While many believe they only need a lawyer when sustaining disabling injuries, this is not necessarily true. A lawyer may benefit you no matter how insignificant your injuries might seem. If an insurance company owes you more than what it offers, you have a reason for litigation.
Attorneys understand the intricacies inherent to most cases involving automotive accidents. Attorneys can direct you toward the most appropriate actions and guide you through the process in your best interests. The bottom line is that professional legal counsel allows you to recover more money from a settlement than you would otherwise manage to obtain by yourself.
Insurance companies and at-fault parties try to save money, even if they have to do so at your expense. They want to pay for no damage. They want to offer as little money with as little effort as possible. They will deny your claim for any reason.
Accordingly, you should contact a lawyer as early in the process as you can. The quicker you find a skilled lawyer who articulates your rights for you, the more successful your outcome.
Also, injuries that seem minor to you may not remain minor. One back injury can lead to future back injuries. It is not always so easy to recognize an injury’s long-term impact on your life.
Future disabilities may impede your ability to work, and lapses in work will naturally reduce your income. An attorney can help you ascertain the compensation you deserve based on everything from your injury’s prognosis to the injury itself.
A lawyer can evaluate an injury’s effects on your health, your ability to work, and your day-to-day life in a way that guarantees you receive as much compensation as necessary.
Is It Ever Appropriate to Communicate With an At-Fault Party’s Insurer?
Avoid all contact with representatives from the at-fault party’s insurance company. Unfamiliar people may have tried to call you several times to obtain. These individuals do not have your best interests in mind, however. Such a quick response on their part may surprise you, but do not mistake this interest for genuine concern. The at-fault party’s insurance company hopes to resolve your case as quickly as possible to keep you from protecting your rights.
Provide no information to the at-fault party or the at-fault party’s insurer,. You need not respond to any of their questions. Just tell them that you are leaving these conversations up to your lawyer. All the at-fault party needs from you is a single lapse in judgment to dismantle your case and claim. Insurance representatives will speak to you for the sole purpose of obstructing your rights. They will hold anything and everything against you to dismantle your compensation claim and reduce the amount of compensation you ultimately receive.
Also, do not trust your insurance company too much. It is also trying to pay as little money as possible while exerting little effort.
Seeking Compensation From Brake Checkers
The most disabling injuries drivers and pedestrians receive in automotive accidents include permanent spinal cord injuries and traumatic brain injuries. Along with a distinct set of symptoms and logistical issues, a long-term disability can affect one’s capacity to earn an income.
Even if you endured something as trivial as a broken bone, you may file a lawsuit to receive compensation from the driver who brake-checked you.
In Missouri, you must assert your claim within five years of the accident’s date.
An injury qualifies as economic damage because it is an expense you must pay because of an accident. You may also qualify for non-economic damages, which references the psychological impacts of your injury. In addition to medical expenses and lost wages, you may base claims on emotional distress and physical pain. Once you establish reasons to seek compensation, then you may advance to the next step, which is proving liability.
If the brake checker is responsible, they owed you a duty of care. A duty of care is what a reasonable person would do to keep others safe. In Missouri, a driver’s duty of care is to allow other drivers to operate their vehicles legally and safely. You must determine if the brake checker abandoned this duty of care by establishing the exact unlawful behaviors they exhibited before the accident.
If the brake checker had no reason to slow down, or if they were under the influence of drugs, you may establish that they breached the duty of care.
Finally, you must show that the brake checker’s behavior caused the accident.
When a lawyer determines that you have suffered from either non-economic or economic damage and assert that the brake checker’s lapse in behavior caused the accident, they can recover compensation for you.
What if the Brake Checker Hit and Run?
As an accident victim, you may not know how to seek compensation most effectively after a hit-and-run incident.
If an aggressor flees a scene and police apprehended then, you can file a car accident claim through the aggressor’s insurance company. Otherwise, you may seek compensation from your insurance company through either general collision or uninsured motorist coverage. These cases require the assistance of the most seasoned lawyers. Even your insurance company will want to offer as little compensation as possible. You need an acute advocate on your side to guarantee your rights and provide you with as much compensation as you deserve.
Contact a Car Accident Lawyer Near You
If someone pulled out in front of you and caused a crash, a car accident lawyer can equip you with the tools you need to resolve your accident injury claim and the time you need to recuperate. Hire an attorney for a car accident who can evaluate your case, corroborate evidence, estimate appropriate compensation, and elevate your case to litigation, if necessary. The insurance company must direct all further communication toward your trained lawyer.
Reputable car accident lawyers offer immediate evaluations of legal options for free. Many will visit injured clients wherever is convenient, including your home or the hospitals where you are recuperating. Car accident attorneys can work with doctors and institutions to secure medical records and document the details of your injuries.
Contact a St. Louis personal injury law firm for a car accident lawyer as quickly as possible for a free consultation. Let us begin working on your case.
I represent individuals in Missouri and Illinois in all types of personal injury cases. In my short time here I have obtained a judgment for $2.5 million and settled a large class action lawsuit for a confidential amount.
I love the city of St. Louis and support it and give back whenever I can. Recently I was appointed by Mayor Francis Slay to serve on the Advisory Board for the Gateway Mall.
I am married to my lovely wife Lauren and we have two beautiful daughters, Mia and Bridget.