What Happens if I’m Partially at Fault for the Accident?
Motor vehicle accidents often happen quickly. There’s little time to make sense of what is happening before it’s entirely over. An individual’s memory can try to fill in the blanks, or their memory can simply fade, causing them to recall events incorrectly. Other involved parties or witnesses can have the same problems. Therefore, it’s imperative to have a skilled Clearwater car accident attorney on your side after a crash. Your lawyer can perform a comprehensive investigation of the accident to determine who is at fault. Making this determination is the key to seeking compensation for your injuries.
Were You at Fault?
Keep in mind that the insurance company for the party who caused your accident and their attorneys will likely try to place as much blame as they can on you. They want to point the finger at you because it decreases their insured’s liability, thereby potentially reducing what they owe for the claim. However, just because they accuse you of fault in the accident doesn’t necessarily mean that you were at fault or were 100 percent at fault.
Discussing the situation with a Clearwater car accident lawyer will help bring clarity to the situation and protect your legal rights to compensation. It’s imperative that you speak to an attorney before speaking with the insurance company or agreeing to any settlement. You could harm your case and settle for much less than you deserve.
You could be partially at fault for your injuries if you:
- Weren’t wearing your seat belt
- Were using your cell phone, or were otherwise distracted
- Were speeding or otherwise disobeying local traffic laws
- Didn’t maintain your vehicle
Florida’s Comparative Fault Laws
Florida follows the doctrine of pure comparative fault. As such, even if you think you are partially to blame for your motor vehicle accident, you could still receive some monetary compensation for your damages. It’s always a good idea to have an experienced Clearwater car accident lawyer review your case to determine your next best steps.
Under pure comparative fault, each at-fault party is liable for their portion of the damages. For example, if you are 30 percent at fault for causing your accident, you will not receive compensation for that 30 percent. However, the other liable party will owe 70 percent of your damages. For example, suppose your claim was worth $100,000. In that case, you would receive $70,000 for your damages.
If your case goes to court, the court will determine what your case is worth and what percentage of fault each party has. Most cases will settle out of court, but the comparative fault doctrine will be considered in settlement negotiations.
Questions about Fault in Your Accident? Contact a Seasoned Clearwater Car Accident Attorney Today
Suppose you or someone you love was injured in an automobile accident. In that case, it’s crucial to act quickly and discuss the specifics of the situation with a competent Clearwater car accident lawyer. Remember that even if you have some fault, you still have the legal right to compensation under Florida’s civil laws. No matter the facts of your case, the seasoned attorneys at Tragos, Sartes & Tragos are committed to helping injured clients like yourself get what they deserve. Contact us by calling (727) 441-9030 or reaching out online. The sooner you contact us, the better the chances you can maximize your financial recovery.