One common misconception we hear all the time is that a driver who rear-ends another vehicle is “always” at fault for the accident. That simply is not the case. In some situations, a driver will not be liable. Instead, the vehicle in front is to blame for the collision even though it’s the car that got hit. Let’s take a closer look at rear-end collisions so you will understand how they are analyzed.
A Presumption that You Are to Blame
The fact is that in most rear-end collisions, the vehicle behind is to blame for the crash. In the typical rear-end collision, the vehicle behind is following too closely or driving while distracted. This makes the driver of the second car legally to blame.
There is a presumption that you are to blame for an accident if you hit another vehicle. This presumption has arisen because of experience with these cases. However, you can rebut this presumption, meaning you won’t be to blame if you come forward with facts that show you were not negligent.
Determining fault matters, because you can only sue if you are not fully to blame for the crash. If you are solely responsible, then you are likely to be on the receiving end of a lawsuit.
Situations Where You Are Not to Blame
There are some common situations where a motorist is not to blame for the crash, such as:
- The vehicle in front of you makes a stop for no reason. If you are tooling down I-95, and the vehicle in front of you stops illegally, then you probably are not to blame for rear-ending it. In this example, you can probably sue for damage to your own car.
- Two cars work together for a “swoop and squat.” One squats right beside your car while the second swoops in front of you, causing an unavoidable collision. Because the squatting car blocked your way, you had no ability to swerve and avoid the accident. Some drivers run this “swoop and squat” technique for insurance fraud purposes.
In other situations, though, you will be to blame for a rear-end collision. The law expects that all motorists will give the car in front of them enough room in case it needs to stop suddenly.
Contact a Miami Car Accident Lawyer
After a rear-end collision, you might not know what to do. Even if you are the one who slammed into the car ahead of you, you might still be able to claim compensation.
Contact Dolan Dobrinsky Rosenblum today. You can schedule a free consultation by calling 305-371-2692.