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Steven M. Lee, PC

Q:
Another driver rear-ended my car, and he’s claiming that the accident is my fault because I stopped in traffic. How can an attorney prove that the collision was the other driver’s fault?

A:

While it is possible for the driver of the vehicle in front to be held liable in the event of a rear-end collision, the driver of the following car is generally presumed to be at fault. There are exceptions, however.

Determining Fault

In a rear-end collision, the driver of the following vehicle will nearly always be considered at least partially to blame. All drivers are expected to follow other cars at a safe distance, since vehicles frequently slow down dramatically or even stop completely due to road hazards or heavy traffic. Drivers should always maintain sufficient space between their own vehicle and the car ahead of them to prevent a collision in the event of an unanticipated stop. However, there are some scenarios in which the driver of the lead car may be considered partially responsible for the collision. These include accidents that occur when:

  • His brake lights are malfunctioning.
  • He fails to turn on his hazard lights or pull over when he gets a flat tire.
  • He stops his vehicle in a traffic lane without warning.
  • He reverses unexpectedly.
  • He is driving recklessly.
  • He stops quickly in order to make a turn, which he fails to execute.

Comparative Negligence

The state of Texas has comparative negligence rules, permitting fault to be shared among multiple drivers. Under this system, each party involved is held accountable for the portion of the accident that is deemed to be his fault, also known as proportionate responsibility. Any driver determined to be more than 50 percent at fault for the accident will be barred from recovering any compensation from the other at-fault drivers.

Rear-End Collision Litigation

If you’ve been involved in a rear-end collision, you need professional representation by an experienced attorney. These cases are frequently complicated, requiring a thorough accident investigation in order to gather the evidence needed to prove that you were not at fault. To learn more about what the law offices of Steve M. Lee, P.C., can do for you, visit us on Facebook.

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