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Personal injury claims hinge on a plaintiff’s ability to prove liability. Liability determines who is at fault for an incident, and as a result, the injuries caused by an incident. When a car accident injures someone, it’s important to know who is responsible for the car accident itself. Victims intent on getting compensation for their injuries can give themselves the best odds possible by working with an experienced personal injury attorney who knows exactly what it takes to prove liability and use it to secure a fair settlement or court award.
Many people misunderstand Florida’s no-fault insurance laws, believing that this system completely eliminates the need for car accident personal injury cases. However, liability is still a crucial element of Florida car accident cases. No-fault laws only require that each party utilize their own insurance company to cover some of their damages. This doesn’t mean that victims can only seek payment from their insurance providers.
Many people only carry $10,000 of personal injury protection (PIP) coverage, which is the minimum amount required under Florida law. A moderate or serious injury can easily cost more than $10,000, particularly if you need emergency transportation, ongoing care, or surgery. When this happens and your PIP coverage runs out, you are on the hook for any additional costs. If another party is responsible for the crash, however, you can sue them for your losses.
Because of this, liability is an extremely important concept, even in states with no-fault insurance requirements.
What does it take to prove liability? Your personal injury lawyer will help you determine which types of evidence are most effective for your accident and case, but in general, there are several types of evidence that effectively demonstrate liability. The standard of proof varies, depending on whether you are negotiating a settlement with a car insurance company or taking a case to court.
Your lawyer may use some or all of these types of evidence:
One easy way to figure out who is likely liable for a crash is to figure out which type of crash it is. While there are no clear-cut rules that work 100% of the time, certain trends definitely make it easier to assess liability.
Rear-end accidents are among the easiest to investigate, simply because of the fact that the driver striking the car in front of them should have kept enough distance to stop safely. There are exceptions, especially if the car in front drives erratically, stops suddenly for no reason, or otherwise tries to confuse you. In the vast majority of rear-end crashes, the driver behind the front car is liable.
T-bone accidents are a little more difficult to examine. Everything comes down to the type of intersection where the accident occurred. For example, at an intersection governed by stoplights, the party who runs the red light and strikes the other car is liable for the accident. Whoever ignores road signage or stoplights generally assumes liability for the crash, which means that either driver can be the victim.
Lane change accidents are almost always pinned on the driver changing lanes. This is because the vehicle already in the other lane is assumed to have the right to continue in their current lane, and the person merging must wait until there is a safe opening. Again, there are exceptions. If the other driver speeds up or slows down to try to stop the other person’s lane change, they could be liable. The same is true if they were engaging in other unsafe behavior. However, liability is generally attributed to the person who is switching lanes.
No matter what the circumstances of your car crash may be, you deserve high-quality legal representation from an attorney with your best interests in mind. That is what we offer at the Law Offices of David I. Fuchs. To take the first step toward justice and fight for the compensation you deserve, reach out to us online or call us now at (954) 568-3636.