Who is to Blame in a Motor Vehicle Accident?

At first glance it may be relatively easy to establish who is at fault when examining a car or truck accident in Southern California. Often if common sense is applied, it is easy to see that one of the parties involved in the accident acted in a reckless, negligent, or imprudent manner. However, many factors need to be considered in order to find out who truly was at fault.

Police Reports

A clear “bad guy” is not always the case when police reports are taken and stories are misinterpreted. A police report is basically a narrative told by the officer of the events that unfolded leading up to the accident. An officer will usually take into account physical evidence, as well as witness testimony. Some physical evidence that the officer may take into consideration include:

  • Skid marks on the ground
  • Traffic signals
  • Point of impact for the vehicles
  • The direction and rate of travel of the vehicles involved

The physical evidence in conjunction with witness testimony will give the officer a pretty good idea of how the accident occurred. When reading the officers report, it is important to see if any traffic law violations were noted. To whom the violations were issued is a good indicator of who is at fault in an accident.

Accidents Where Blame is Clear
In certain kinds of accidents, it is easy to see who is at fault. These types of accidents are labeled “no doubt” liability accidents and are most often left unchallenged by insurance companies. These types of accidents typically occur when one driver rear ends another, or when a driver turns left in front of oncoming traffic.

In a rear-end accident, frequently it is the fault and negligence of the driver who was either following too close or driving in a inattentive manner. In a left hand turn accident, it is usually the turning driver who cuts across traffic without properly ensuring that there is ample room to complete the turn.

We Are Here to Help
If you or someone you know has been injured in a car accident, you should contact one of our experienced Los Angeles personal injury attorneys at Steinberg Injury Lawyers at (800) 989-6385.

Be sure to order a FREE copy of our controversial book, 7 BIGGEST MISTAKES That Can Ruin Your California Injury Case.