Both parties could be at fault in a side-impact accident if they demonstrated careless behavior immediately before the crash. In such cases, it is important to calculate what percentage of the blame falls on each party, as this can determine who can recover compensation and how much they can receive.
Examples of Dual Fault in Side-Impact Accidents
Cases where side-impact car accidents are the fault of both parties include the following:
- Party A ran a red light. Party B could have seen them and stopped in time to avoid a collision, but they were distracted by their cell phone.
- Party A and Party B were speeding, so neither could stop in time to avoid the other.
- Party A pulled out of their driveway while looking at a passenger instead of the road ahead. Party B was daydreaming and failed to notice Party A pulling out.
Both parties exhibited dangerous and preventable behavior in these cases, so both are at fault.
Other At-Fault Parties
Sometimes, there is more than one at-fault party, but one of those parties is not a driver. A reckless driver’s action may be exacerbated by:
- A government agency that failed to maintain the roadway properly
- An auto part manufacturer that allowed a defective product onto the market and failed to recall that product as soon as they recognized the problem
- An auto mechanic that failed to identify or repair a problem that should have been obvious to them
- Another roadway user, such as a motorcyclist or pedestrian, who got in the way of someone else
You may not realize right away that these parties played a role. Car accidents can be very hectic, confusing, and frightening events.
Suppose you file a lawsuit before hiring a lawyer to investigate potentially liable parties. In that case, you could leave financial compensation on the table and allow a negligent party to evade penalties for their poor behavior. While time is of the essence when it comes to personal injury cases, you may still want to take the time to speak with a law firm first.
For a free legal consultation, call (404) 888-8888
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Can an At-Fault Party Get Compensation?
Yes, you can sue for and receive financial compensation even if you contributed to the accident in which you were injured. However, your payout would be limited, according to O.C.G.A. § 51-12-33.
For example, if a jury decides that you are 40 percent at fault, and the other party is 60 percent at fault. You could then receive 60 percent of the compensation you asked for. The other party could be barred from receiving any monetary award because their share of blame exceeds 49 percent.
You can legally seek compensation for losses such as:
- Pain and suffering
- Impaired quality of life
- Disabling injuries
- Loss of income
- Medical costs
- Repair costs
What If I Am Not at Fault?
Even if you are completely blameless for the accident, the liable party or their representatives may try to argue that you are guilty. Why? Successfully leveling such an accusation would enable them to pay you less for your injuries or force you to pay their client compensation.
Hiring a car accident attorney to represent you could make it easier to prove your innocence. They could fight to establish your claim to damages by:
Building Your Case
Even if you are entirely sure of the liable party’s identity, you cannot collect compensation based on this knowledge without sufficient evidence. Evidence could come from sources like:
- The official police report
- Your medical records
- Expert or eyewitness statements
- Video footage
- Personal photos or statements
Arguing Your Case
You may be called upon to present your case to various parties throughout your lawsuit. These parties include:
- Your insurance company: If it turns out you are at fault, your insurer is responsible for paying damages, so they can want to investigate the accident.
- The liable party’s insurance company: They want to reduce their payout as much as possible. You must be careful when speaking to them because they can use any excuse to deny payment.
- A judge and jury: If your case goes to court, your lawyer can tell the judge and jury why you believe the other party is guilty and how much they owe you in damages.
A lawyer knows both the law and the art of building persuasive cases. Letting them speak on your behalf may make it easier to convince others that you are not to blame for the collision.
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We Can Uncover the At-Fault Party
Bader Scott Injury Lawyers is dedicated to helping Georgia residents seek compensation in car accident cases, including side-impact accidents. We can determine whether one or both parties were at fault in your case and help you fight for the compensation you need. Call today for a free case evaluation.