When There Are Disputes Over Fault in a Car Accident


If you’ve been in a car accident, someone is almost always at fault. Even a defective part means that the manufacturer can be held accountable. So, what happens when there are disputes over who is liable? The other driver may claim that you are at fault, but you may say the same of them. Here’s how things may play out when there are arguments over fault.

Conflicting Stories

When each driver says the other was at fault, the insurance companies have a lot to sort out before deciding who to compensate. As a driver, there are several things you can do to prove your innocence. Immediately following the accident, call the police so that an officer can assess the scene and provide a report of fault. Insurance will not always use a police report to determine fault, but it can help with their final judgement. Then take pictures of the accident, collect witness statements, and see a doctor for injuries. Each of these steps gives you more evidence to argue your innocence.

Partial Fault

It isn’t uncommon for fault to be split between the two drivers. Say you were speeding when the other driver pulled out in front of you. In this situation, you both acted negligently and contributed in some way to the accident. Depending on the state you live in, insurance may decide to award you compensation based on how much you are at fault. Just be warned that being partially at fault can prevent you from filing a claim with the other driver’s insurance in some states.

Admissions of Guilt

If the other driver says you are at fault, but you don’t know who is at fault, that is okay. You do not need to admit guilt, even if you think you are actually liable. There may be factors you don’t know about that influenced the accident, but by admitting guilt prematurely, you are almost guaranteeing you take the blame for it. No matter your opinion of fault after an accident, simply relay the facts of the situation to the police and insurance. They can then make a decision of fault based on the details instead of what you and the other driver “think” happened.

If you are unable to get compensated from the other driver’s insurance because they state that you are liable, you may be wondering who is the best car accident lawyer that you can speak with. Car accident lawyers handle disputes of fault all the time, and they may be able to get you a settlement anyway.