Many people are injured in automobile accidents due to no fault of their own. However, it is important to remember that just because someone violated a traffic law and caused an accident does not necessarily mean that they will be found liable for damages in a personal injury lawsuit. In most cases, insurance companies work hard to find some fault or mistake made by the victim which allows them to deny payment of all claims. Our state follows the pure contributory negligence law. If you are found slightly at fault for your accident, even if your mistake contributes just 1% toward causing the collision, you lose all rights of compensation.
Establishing Fault in a Car Accident
The main aspect of establishing liability in an auto accident case is proving negligence, and there are certain situations and types of accidents where liability is relatively clear-cut. These include:
- Rear end collisions. The basic rules of the road require that vehicles keep a safe following distance from one another, so the vehicle that rear ends another will almost always be found liable.
- Left turns. Generally, a car making a left-hand turn is held responsible when there is a collision with another vehicle coming straight from the other direction, although there can be exceptions, such as if the vehicle traveling straight was speeding or running a red light.
- Accidents involving impaired drivers. Although a drunk driver’s fault is not always automatic, the fact that they were under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs and were arrested for DUI will make it hard for them to escape at least some degree of liability for an accident.
- Car/pedestrian accidents. Drivers are required to act with extra caution when pedestrians are present, but pedestrians are not held blameless in all situations, such as when they don’t use a designated crosswalk or walk along a busy freeway at night while wearing dark clothing.
Although fault for an accident may seem obvious, that usually isn’t enough for insurance companies. For this reason, injured people in North Carolina need the assistance of an experienced auto accident attorney to help establish liability and increase their chances of receiving fair compensation for their injuries.
Contact an Auto Accident Attorney in North Carolina Today
If you’ve been injured in a motor vehicle accident that was another driver’s fault, contact the Winston-Salem injury attorneys at Nagle & Associates, P.A. online or call (800) 411-1583 to schedule your free initial case evaluation today.