Determining liability in car accidents

People who live in the state of Florida may find it interesting that automobile insurance providers sought to change state legislation when it pertains to car accidents to make it simpler for them to be able to object fault and liability issues. The main reason for their lobbying to make changes is that all states require that drivers carry liability insurance. A specific example of what the insurance industry was trying to enforce is if a driver has been hit by another motorist who was texting while driving, the driver may not be able to receive damages if they do not carry liability insurance.

There are a variety of factors that are used when determining if a driver is liable for injuries that stem from a car accident. In situations where a driver has broken a law that led to a wreck, such as making an illegal lane change, it is possible that the driver could be found liable. Different levels of responsibility assess whether a driver is at fault for causing an accident and to what degree, and they are negligence, recklessness, strict liability and intentional misconduct.

A negligent car driver who is deemed to have been responsible for a car accident has committed a tort. This type of negligence can include such behavior as being distracted by a passenger or a car radio while driving.

Reckless or intentional misconduct such as driving while impaired often makes it easier to determine that the driver who was so engaged was at fault in a resulting accident. However, in situations like fender benders where an intentional act was most likely not committed, determining fault might become more complex to assess. An individual that has been in a car accident can consult with a lawyer to help determine if the other driver could be held at fault for damages.

Source: FindLaw, “Fault and Liability for Motor Vehicle Accidents”, accessed on Jan. 23, 2015