Car accidents claim the lives of thousands of Pennsylvanians each year. With many highways passing through Media and the surrounding areas, high-speed auto accidents are quite common, as are smaller fender-benders and other low-speed collisions. No matter the severity of your accident, you may face substantial injuries from the crash.
After a car accident, do not rely on auto insurance to solve your problems or pay for your injuries. Instead, contact a Media car accident lawyer to fight for full compensation on your case. The car accident attorneys at The Reiff Law Firm represent victims in Media and the surrounding areas in Delaware County, and we work to get you the financial compensation you need for medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering. To schedule your free legal consultation, call us today at (215) 246-9000.
Who is At Fault in a Car Accident
Determining who is at fault for a car crash requires looking at the specifics of each case. In many cases, the law can point to one driver who was at fault, but things become complex when there is more than one driver involved in the accident or when the victim was doing something wrong when the accident occurred. Fortunately, our attorneys can help you understand who was at fault for your accident and fight to get you compensation, even if you shared some of the fault.
Pennsylvania law allows judges and juries to assign partial blame to each party in a car accident. In cases where you were injured by the combined fault of more than one other driver, you can sue each driver who contributed to your injuries. For instance, if you were hit by a driver making a left turn, then the driver behind you crashes into you while tailgating, you may be able to get partial compensation from each of them.
Even if you were partly at fault for your own injuries, you can still receive compensation. Drivers are often afraid that they cannot sue for a car accident because they were speeding when the accident occurred or because they looked down at their phone when the accident occurred. Courts may assign you partial blame if this happened, but the overwhelming negligence of a drunk or reckless driver might negate any fault you shared. Even if you were partly negligent, you can still receive compensation as long as you were 50% at-fault or less.
Determining fault usually means looking at the totality of the circumstances of the accident and what traffic laws require of the drivers. Clearly negligent acts like running a red light, driving under the influence, or excessive speeding may clearly indicate who was at fault. In more close circumstances, it may be up to a jury to determine who should have yielded and who was responsible for the crash.
Common Types of Car Accidents in Media
As mentioned, the circumstances of the crash usually dictate who was at fault for the crash. The following are all common car accident circumstances that have a somewhat clear rule for who is at fault. Of course, the specifics of your case might change the outcome, but these are good guidelines to help you understand which driver was at fault in some common situations.
Drunk Driving Accidents
Typically, anyone who gets behind the wheel with too much alcohol in their system is at fault for any injuries they cause. The same is true for drugged driving, as both of these violate criminal laws in PA. Even though drunk drivers may be the victim under other circumstances, the fact that they were driving while intoxicated usually places the blame on them.
Texting and Distracted Driving Accidents
Accidents that occur because a driver was distracted or using their cell phone typically place the blame on the distracted driver. Circumstances may override their fault, especially if the other driver did something more egregious or dangerous, but texting usually assures that the driver was at least partly at fault for the accident.
Left Turn Accidents
Drivers making a left turn must yield to other drivers going straight or making a right turn at an intersection. Drivers who crash into oncoming traffic when making a left turn are often at fault for the crash. If the oncoming driver was speeding or intentionally sped up to “beat” the turning driver, they may share the blame, but the driver turning left still violated a duty to yield.
Following too closely is illegal in Pennsylvania, and this traffic law usually holds the driver to the rear responsible for rear-end accidents. The only circumstances that typically break this rule of thumb are when the driver in front was backing up or when they “brake-check” the driver behind them. Failing to look out for other cars when backing up can put you at fault for an accident, as can suddenly braking to intentionally scare the driver behind you – even if they are tailgating.
For a Free Consultation, Call Our Media, Pennsylvania Car Accident Attorneys
If you or a loved one was injured in a car crash in Media or the surrounding areas, contact our law offices today. The Reiff Law Firm’s Media, PA car accident lawyers represent injured parties and fight to get them the compensation they need after car accident injuries. To schedule a free consultation to explore your options for financial compensation, contact our law offices today at (215) 246-9000.