How Do You Determine Fault?
The injuries from car crashes are often severe and can leave injured drivers, passengers, and pedestrians facing insurmountable debt from lost earnings and medical bills. Their families also bear the brunt of the accident because of lost financial support. Fortunately, injured people have options in Connecticut to hold the at-fault party financially responsible for their damages.
But to hold at-fault drivers responsible, injured parties must determine and show who caused the crash. Because of the significant sum of money at stake, he-said, she-said arguments will not suffice, so they must present evidence of fault.
Determining Fault in an Accident Is Usually Not Easy
Various factors will come into play when determining fault for a crash. It is not enough to identify what or who played a role in the resulting crash and damages. Relevant parties must also determine each party’s extent of fault. Once fault is assigned among the parties involved, the state’s comparative negligence rules will help determine which party is financially accountable for what.
This is where lawyers, law enforcement, and insurance claims adjusters come in. When they investigate the accident, they will conduct the following to help figure out who and what caused the crash and who must pay for the losses:
- Interviewing and getting the statements of everyone involved in the crash and those who witnessed
- Examining the accident scene and obtaining evidence, including pictures and videos of the scene, vehicle damage, any injuries, and the vehicle’s positions, among others.
- Securing other pieces of evidence, including mobile phone records and surveillance camera
Once the relevant parties have concluded their investigations, they will assign a percentage fault for each party. Based on the comparative negligence statute of Connecticut, injured people can recover compensation from an at-fault party. However, their damages will be decreased by their level of fault (if applicable) corresponding to their share of liability. On the other hand, they may not recover anything if their percentage of fault for the crash is over 50 percent.
Why are the comparative negligence rules crucial? In case the car accident claim heads to court, the jury or judge will apply these rules to determine each party’s fault and payment obligations. In the insurance claims process, insurance adjusters will apply these rules when determining a claim’s value and negotiating an insurance settlement.
Ultimately, the determination of fault would rest significantly on the evidence at hand and the ability of the injured party to negotiate a claim with the insurer or convince a jury or judge.
Speak to an Experienced Tolland Roadside Lawyer Now
You must consider various fault-related principles in car accident cases, and different parties may use different ways to determine fault to fit their interests. Because determining fault can be challenging, it’s essential to have an experienced Tolland roadside lawyer working on your case to help ensure you recover the maximum compensation amount possible under the law. Contact Berman & Russo online or by phone at 860-644-1548 to schedule a free case review with a Tolland roadside lawyer today.