The fault is easily one of the most concerning issues that come up during crash resolution. Fault questions may be difficult to answer. Without a doubt, any Ohio car accident attorney deals with fault every day. It’s an issue that many face and the trouble is that in almost every crash, both drivers feel that they are not at fault. It’s easy to assume that you were completely without fault, you feel like the victim, you may have even been hurt in the crash.
The trouble when it comes to fault isn’t about how people feel. It is about who took the most action to result in a collision. Because of this, many victims find themselves answering a ton of questions about what they were doing and how it could have contributed to fault in a crash.
Understanding Ohio Fault
The majority of claims have both drivers receive some percentage of fault or take some degree of responsibility for the crash. For example, if you have the greenlight and we’re traveling through the intersection as normal, it would seem that you’re not at fault when a car hits you from the side.
Clearly the other vehicle ran a red light, and that is a major traffic violation. However, if you were traveling at 40 mph in a 35 mph zone it could be that you could take a degree of fault because I’m speeding. Ohio uses a comparative negligence, or comparative fault system. Because of that, it’s common that victims could receive some assignment of fault.
Can the Victim be At-Fault?
Although the victim can’t take small percentages of fault or responsibility for the crash, a victim should never inherently be at fault. The difference is that the at fault driver is unable to see compensation for injuries or damages. Ohio’s fault system allows the victims of a crash to recover The costs of property damage, medical expenses, and additional costs associated with a crash.
The caveat of course is that the victim cannot be 50 or more percent at fault. That is the difference between the victim and the at-fault driver. Typically, the victim cannot recover compensation for the percentage of which they contributed to the crash.
Percentages of Fault
Percentages a fault help to guide financial recovery. In a normal claim, the insurance providers involved would investigate the crash, and then assign a percentage of fault to each driver.
However, insurance providers don’t want to lose money by making a high pay out and I don’t want to lose money by having a lengthy investigation. To accomplish this they do cursory investigations, or look at the surface level of fault, and attempt to minimize payouts for any driver involved. This all changes when attorneys are involved and negotiations are brought to the table or the case is taken to court.
Defending Yourself Against Fault Claims
It is always possible to defend yourself against questions and claims of fault unless you genuinely caused the accident. Even victims who were hit from behind in a rear end collision can face aggressive questioning about fault and what they were doing during the crash. Often insurance investigators will push to make the victim feel as though they contributed in some way.
It is imperative that the victim of a crash work to ensure they are not taken advantage of by insurance companies. Although they are the victim, they must be extremely careful in how to answer questions from the insurance agencies. Even acknowledging that at some point you had changed the radio station could work against you.
Start with an Ohio Car Accident Attorney on Your Offense
It is true, the best defense is always a good offense. Use this approach with your car accident claim by contacting an Ohio car accident attorney to initiate your claim and handle the process of resolving the accident. Whether the other driver involved has an attorney or not, you need someone who will look at the claim, and understand why you’re facing specific questions regarding fault.
Ohio car accident attorneys Often work diligently to help their clients understand why they’re facing certain questions and to help answer those questions in the most transparent way possible. Of course, attorneys still want to represent their client’s best interest and to do that but likely work with a variety of experts to better understand the crash. When you work with Ohio car accident attorneys it’s more likely that your claim will have an in-depth investigation rather than the surface level investigations that insurance companies use to make their determination.