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Determining Fault When You are Hurt in a Car Accident

HomeBlogCar AccidentDetermining Fault When You are Hurt in a Car Accident

Determining Fault When You are Hurt in a Car Accident

January 02, 2021
By Lafferty Gallagher Scott

When you have been injured in an auto accident due to someone else’s negligence, it is understandable that you want to know who will pay for your damages. Determining fault in an Ohio car accident can be complicated, which is why it is essential to take the right steps after the collision. We recommend working with a skilled Ohio car accident lawyer, like the team at Lafferty, Gallagher & Scott, LLC. We can protect your rights and help you fight for the compensation you deserve.

Our attorneys have years of experience helping Ohio clients just like you get the money they deserve after being injured in a car accident. Even if you claim the other driver is at fault, you still have to prove it before the insurance company will be willing to settle. In some cases, it may be necessary to take the case to trial before the other side is willing to pay.

Comparative Negligence in Ohio

Ohio is a comparative negligence state. What does that mean for your accident? Well, it means that you can collect for your own damages, even if you were partially at fault for the accident. There is a threshold limit, though. You cannot be more than 50% at fault for the accident, and your percentage of fault will reduce your compensation.

For example, if you are found to be 50% at fault, it means both you and the other driver can each collect 50% of your damages. If you are found to be 40% at fault, you can collect 60% of your damages. If you are 51% at fault, you will collect nothing. In fact, the other driver has the right to collect 51% of their damages from your insurance company.   

Because of comparative negligence laws, the other driver’s insurance will be looking to assign as much liability to you to reduce or eliminate their potential payout. You need to present a strong liability argument to maximize your compensation. That’s one reason why you want an experienced lawyer representing you. We know how to present the strongest case and routinely negotiate with insurance companies. We won’t let them play games or try to avoid paying out what you are owed.

Proving Liability

To successfully collect compensation, you need to show the other driver was liable. The first step is to show the other driver owed you some type of duty. Since motorists are required to follow laws and drive safely, establishing duty is relatively easy. Next, you need to show the other driver breached their duty. For example, everyone must stop at a red light. If the other driver failed to do so, then they breached their duty.

The third element of negligence is causation. You must show that the breach of duty is what caused your accident. If the other driver running the red light is not what led to the collision, then you do not have causation. The final element is damages. You must show some type of financial loss, such as medical expenses and time off work, to bring a claim.

Contact Our Ohio Car Accident Lawyers

If you need assistance holding the other driver accountable for your injuries, let us help. Contact Lafferty, Gallagher & Scott, LLC today to schedule an initial consultation. Let us put our years of experience to work for you.

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