How to Determine Fault in a Car Accident

How to Determine Fault in a Car Accident

Updated on Wednesday 17th January 2018

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How-to-determine-fault-in-a-car-accidentCar accidents are some of the most frequent incidents causing personal injuries in Los Angeles. While most of the time negligence can be invoked as a cause of a car crash, from a legal point of view things are a little different because of the law and because fault must be proved before obtaining any compensation. Fault in a car accident is usually established by the insurance company, but it is not always that things are that easy and some cases end up in court where fault must be proved by substantial evidence. No matter the case, it is best to rely on our Los Angeles personal injury attorneys if you want to demonstrate the fault in a vehicle accident.

What are the options for obtaining a compensation after a car accident in California?

California is one of the U.S. states in which car accidents fall under the “fault system” which allows the injured party to file an insurance claim or a lawsuit against the presumably liable party. The injured may file an insurance claim with their insurance company or the driver’s insurance adjuster. However, before obtaining the compensation the person suffering the personal injury must prove who is at fault for the accident.

In most cases, the individual who will determine fault in a car accident will be the insurance claim adjuster. He will base his findings on a team of professionals, when necessary, and on the evidence gathered from the scene of the accident.

We invite you to watch the following video on how you can determine fault in car accidents


Driver negligence in car accidents in Los Angeles

Driver negligence is the most common factor leading to car accidents in California. If you have suffered an injury as a consequence of a car accident, our Los Angeles personal injury lawyers can help you determine who is at fault by proving the driver’s negligence based on the following evidence:

  • -          police reports are the most solid evidence in determining fault in car accidents;
  • -          the California Vehicle Code can also be used to prove who is at fault in car crashes;
  • -          the evidence from the scene of the accident is also proof of fault in the car accident.

The main elements which can determine fault in a car accident in Los Angeles are:

  • -          the cars’ position on the road;
  • -          skid marks;
  • -          debris from the car accident;
  • -          the road or weather conditions.

Apart from these, the driver may have been on the phone, or not paying attention to the road which can be proved by talking to witnesses, where the case applies. Showing the driver violated traffic rules or the law itself can also be invoked by experienced Los Angeles personal injury attorneys to make a strong case.

In some vehicle accident cases, the term "no-doubt liability" is used. This means that the fault is almost 100% caused by the other driver. Examples include rear-end collisions, left turn accidents and crashes caused by driving under the influence.
It is important to know that California uses a comparative fault rule, meaning that the plaintiff may claim compensation even if he was also found guilty of the accident. This is important in the context of the aforementioned “no-doubt liability”, as the plaintiff can also be at fault in left turn accidents, for example, if he was driving over the speed limit or ignored a red light. The defendant can use this against you and diminish the value of the claim. One of our Los Angeles personal injury attorneys can help you if pure comparative negligence applies in your case.
Regardless of the manner in which the accident took place, plaintiffs are advised not to admit fault, even to a small percentage, in front of the insurance claims adjuster and, in some cases, even in front of the defendant. 

If you have suffered a car accident and need assistance in proving fault, you can contact our Los Angeles personal injury attorneys if you want to obtain the right compensation. You should also know that you can obtain the right settlement with the insurance adjuster and avoid an unpleasant and lengthy lawsuit with the help of our attorneys.



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