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Determining fault in the wake of a multi-car crash

| Feb 7, 2020 | Motor Vehicle Accidents

Georgia residents who were involved in an accident involving three or more vehicles probably know how hard it can be to establish everyone’s degree of fault. Those who have not been involved in one would do well to know the basics of how fault is established. It all comes down to the legal concept of negligence: that is, the failure of someone to exercise reasonable care.

Let’s say that Driver A is rear-ended by Driver B, who was tailgating. Driver B is clearly at fault unless Driver A did something unusual like braking suddenly for no reason. But if Driver B was also rear-ended by a tailgating, or speeding or otherwise careless Driver C, then both B and C may be held liable by Driver A since the impact of Driver C with B increased the impact of Driver B with A.

In this case, Driver B may also be able to pursue a case against Driver C despite being partly responsible for Driver A’s injuries, vehicle damage and so on. There are times, though, when Driver C may force a blameless Driver B into Driver A, in which case A can only hold C liable. As for what evidence will be needed, this can include the police report, eyewitness testimony and physical findings like debris and skid marks.

Determining fault in motor vehicle accidents is not the only difficult part to a personal injury claim. Auto insurance companies are not eager to pay out reasonable settlements and may try to get victims to accept less than they deserve. This might open the way for a courtroom trial. These are just a few reasons why victims may want to hire a lawyer. It all starts with an evaluation of the case in light of Georgia’s modified comparative negligence law.