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Car accident laws – What You Need to Know

What are car accident laws?

Car accident laws refer to the legal rules that determine who is responsible for the damage resulting from a traffic collision. This specialization of law consists of the principles of negligence. As with most cases, car accident laws are governed almost wholly by state law. When an accident or car collision occurs, the victims in every state must prove a few things before they can get compensated. These elements are:

  • Duty
  • Breach
  • Causation
  • Harm

Car drivers have a legal obligation to follow all the traffic rules and to drive their vehicles responsibly. This means driving at a reasonable speed, exercising control, observing traffic lights and signals, using blinkers, using headlights, and maintaining control. The existence of a duty is accepted without any argument. On the contrary, the plaintiff will get asked to provide evidence that the defendant breached that duty. The breach can be proved by involving eyewitnesses, who were present during the accident, CCTV surveillance cameras and videos, physical evidence on the vehicle in question such as paint smudges, skid marks, alco blow readings, or an admission of fault by the defendant.

car accident

The defendant must drive his car in a given manner or observe car accident laws. It is essential to note that failure to observe that, the court will not come to the assumption that those are the circumstances that led to the injuries on the side of the plaintiff or their car. On the contrary, the plaintiff must show the specific evidence that resulted in the accident or injury. In such a case, the evidence must be provided through a medical report. The medical report must be from a reputable hospital, and a professional medic must be able to ascertain that the injuries experienced by the plaintiff are in line with the nature of the crash. The injuries must not have existed before the car accident or beforehand. 

Also, the plaintiff must prove they have been injured. No matter how careless the other driver was before the accident or crash, the plaintiff cannot issue a negligence lawsuit unless he/she was injured as a result of that crash or if the car is harmed. "Near miss" or "almost hit" cases do not qualify in a car accident lawyer. Once physical harm gets proved, the plaintiff is entitled to compensation. Compensation may be through finances to cover medical expenses, lost wages, car repairs, and or grief. 

Steps to follow after an accident

Car accident laws differ from one state to another. Depending on where you live, here are a few steps to follow after going through an accident:

The first step to take after a car accident is to keep your opinion private on who is in the wrong. As easy as it may seem, admitting fault is by far the most common mistake potential plaintiffs or defendants make right after a car accident. Note that even a simple apology or negotiation, can be used against you in a court of law. Record any remarks made by the driver, as they will come in handy during the court case. You need to jot down important information about the driver such as their name, license number, car's number plate, address, and insurance information. Note any car witnesses around the scene and get their information. Also, be sure to jot down the names of the police officers present as it will make it easy to get their reports. 

Secondly, do not overlook the benefit of seeking immediate medical attention. You do not want to experience a case of the other driver's attorney to look down on the severity of your injuries or accident in general. They might base their argument on the fact that you opted not to seek medical attention since the accident was not severe or there in the first place.

Finally, contact a car accident attorney. Car accident attorneys are well familiar with car accident laws. With their assistance, you will mostly win the case. The attorney will also ensure you get the right compensation and that you are wary of any documents you sign and the repercussions of signing them.