How Can I Prove Fault in a Car Accident Case?
January 20, 2020
Proving fault in a car accident case requires the collection of important documents. While it is not always needed to determine fault in a car accident, it may be needed when the damages exceed a traditional insurance policy.
Proving Fault in Pennsylvania, a No-Fault State
It is not always necessary to prove fault in a car accident case. Many states, including Pennsylvania, are considered to be a no-fault car accident state. This means that regardless of fault, you will collect compensation from your insurance provider.
However, there are a few reasons in which you might need to prove fault, even in a no-fault state, which includes:
Your Damages Exceed Your Insurance Coverage
It is possible for the damages incurred from a severe car accident to quickly exceed the coverage allowed under a traditional insurance policy. If you were involved in a car accident that requires extensive medical care or the inability to work, it may be necessary to file a third-party personal injury claim. Also, an insurance claim does not cover other types of legal costs like pain and suffering or diminished earning.
Your Insurance Company Denied Your Claim
It is possible for the insurance company to deny your claim. The details of the accident might extend beyond their coverage and bringing light to the fault of the other driver may be necessary.
Understanding Pennsylvania’s Modified Comparative Negligence Laws
It is also important to note that more than one driver can be at fault when a car accident occurs. Pennsylvania follows comparative negligence laws which means as long as the responsible driver holds at least the majority of the fault, then they can be compensated. This means that the at fault driver must hold at least 51% of the fault.
Determining Fault in a Greensburg Car Accident Case
Whether the other driver is only partially to blame or they are completely at fault for the car accident, it is important to collect documentation that determines that fault. Your personal injury lawyer will assist you in building your case with the following documents:
- Medical records
- Police report
- Witness report
- Expert witness report
- Income statement
- Property damage report
Your lawyer might also attempt to gather photographs or videos from the scene of the accident that can determine who is at fault. You can always help your case by capturing photos or videos following a car accident, if possible. It can also be helpful to collect the contact information of anyone who might have witnessed the car accident.
Your lawyer will attempt to identify that the responsible driver did not exercise a standard of care. This often means identifying an act of negligence. Whether they were driving under the influence or speeding, they acted in a way that led to a car accident.
When navigating a comparative negligence case, it is important to limit your fault while bringing evidence that supports that the other driver was mostly at fault. It can be useful to work with a personal injury lawyer as you navigate your case. Severe car accidents will often require ongoing medical care and lost wages. It is only right that the driver responsible for the accident cover these costs.
Contact an Erie Personal Injury Lawyer to Discuss Your Car Accident Case in Pennsylvania
Did you or a loved one sustain serious injuries due to a car accident in Pennsylvania? Don’t let the medical bills pile up while you wait for the negligent party or their insurance company to do the right thing. Right now, you need an aggressive personal injury attorney on your side, fighting to get you the compensation you need, want, and deserve. The skilled attorneys at The Law Office of Mark A. Smith represent clients injured because of car accidents in Pittsburgh, Homestead, Erie, Greensburg, and throughout Pennsylvania. Call (412) 368-8398 or fill out our online contact form to schedule a free consultation about your case. We have an office conveniently located at 355 Fifth Avenue, Suite 205, Pittsburgh, PA 15222.
The articles on this blog are for informative purposes only and are no substitute for legal advice or an attorney-client relationship. If you are seeking legal advice, please contact our law firm directly.