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Who’s Legally at Fault in Car Accidents

Driver negligence or recklessness are the main factors that determine who is legally at fault for an accident. Failure to exercise reasonable care while driving, such as pulling out in front of someone or tailgating, can make you legally responsible for an accident. In South Carolina, whoever is at fault for the collision must pay for any resulting damages.

After an accident, take pictures of all cars that were involved. Avoid admitting fault to the police while at the scene, since other factors you are unaware of may be the true cause of the accident. An investigation by insurance companies and the authorities will uncover what truly led to the collision.

Learn more about who is legally at fault in different types of car accidents:

Company vehicle accidents  

As an employer, you are legally responsible for the actions of your employee while he or she is driving a company car. If your employee runs a red light or commits another illegal or negligent act that causes an accident, then you will be liable for the damages caused. Keep this in mind when hiring employees to drive a company car during work hours. If you allow a friend to drive your car, you may be liable for any damages caused. In some states, liability depends on whether or not you have given the acquaintance permission to drive your car. Depending in the state, parents may be responsible if their child causes an accident while driving mom or dad’s vehicle.

Head-on collision

Head-on collisions are one of the most serious auto accidents one can suffer. If you accidentally swerve into the opposite lane and collide with another car, you are responsible for the harm caused to the victim and their property. The pain and trauma resulting from head-on collisions are devastating. Drunk and distracted driving are the main causes of head-on crashes. The faster you and the other car are driving, the worse the accident will be. Victims of head-on collisions often have no way of avoiding the other car, and if they can swerve out of the way, the driver is at risk of striking another car or running off the road.

Rear-end collisions

Rear-end accidents are most common while in bumper-to-bumper traffic. Although unexpected stops and heavy traffic are difficult conditions to drive in, you are at fault if you hit the back of someone else’s car. The higher the speed of your vehicle and the car you hit will largely determine the severity of the accident. It’s easy to lose control of your car when struck from behind. Avoid any distractions while driving, especially when in heavy traffic. Although it may be tempting to check your phone for texts and messages while bored, it’s easy to run into another car.

Side-impact crashes

Bad weather conditions or negligent driving can cause you to crash into the side of a moving or stationary car. If you hit the side of the car with a driver or passenger, these accidents can be extremely serious. An at-fault t-bone crash can occur when a driver is turning left and crashes into a car who is driving straight. Alternatively, if you turn left in front of an oncoming car when you do not have the right of way and cause an accident, you will also be at fault.

Side-swipe impact

If you drift over into another lane or intentionally merge and crash into the car driving next to you or in your blind spot, then you will have a side-swipe collision. If both you and the other driver manage to maintain control of your vehicles, both of you will walk away with only scratches on your cars. However, if the other driver loses control and wrecks into another vehicle or off of the road, then you will likely be held responsible.

At John Price Law Firm, we represent victims of motor vehicle accidents ranging from cars, trucks, motorcycles, DUI victims, and hit-and-run. If you or a loved one has been injured in a vehicular collision, contact our experienced legal team and let us fight for the justice you deserve. We can be reached on our website or at 843-552-6011.