Determining Liability in an Ohio Car Accident | Kisling, Nestico & Redick
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Liability in Ohio Car Accidents

After a car accident, it’s common for drivers involved to accuse one another. However, what they may say or believe does not necessarily prove fault. To establish liability in Ohio car accidents, negligence must be proven.

The highly skilled Ohio car accident lawyers at Kisling, Nestico & Redick have years of experience proving negligence and liability in car accident cases. If you have been involved in a car accident and would like to determine who is at fault, contact us today at 1-800-HURT-NOW.

Ohio Follows the Tort System

The state of Ohio follows the tort, or at-fault insurance, system. This system states that if you are involved in a car accident, the driver who is considered at fault will be the one responsible for any damages the accident caused. These damages may include vehicle damage, medical bills, lost wages, physical pain, and mental anguish.

The insurance company of the at-fault driver will be liable for paying for these damages to the driver who was not at fault. In Ohio, every licensed driver with a registered vehicle on the road must carry insurance coverage. The minimum liability insurance required in the state is:

  • $25,000 for injuries or death, per person
  • $50,000 total for injuries or death caused by any one accident
  • $25,000 for property damage in an accident

Police Reports Help Establish Liability

In most cases, the police report of an accident is used to help establish liability. Since police are almost always the first at the scene, their account of the accident is important. A police report may contain the following information:

  • The name, address, and insurance information of all drivers involved in the accident
  • The location, date, and time of the crash
  • A description of weather and road conditions
  • The contact information of witnesses
  • A description of the vehicles involved and their damages
  • A diagram of the accident scene
  • Details regarding what was said to the police officer

Ohio’s Comparative Negligence Law

Ohio follows the comparative negligence law which gives an injured party the right to seek compensation for injuries even if they were partially responsible for the accident. This law improves upon the former contributory negligence law that stated that if an injured party was even one percent at fault, they could not recover any compensation.

Under the comparative negligence law, damages are reduced by your own negligence. For example, if you were 10 percent liable and suffered $10,000 in damages, you’d be able to collect $9,000 in damages. If you are at least 51 percent liable for the accident, then you will not be allowed to recover any compensation at all.

Liability in Ohio car accidents can sometimes be difficult to determine, and when compensation for damages is involved, it’s of great importance to have the skilled legal counsel of an Ohio car accident attorney from Kisling, Nestico & Redick on your side. Call us today to learn more about how we can help.

Common Reasons a Driver May Be Liable

Proving liability after an Ohio car accident can be complicated. However, the police report and other resources can make it easier to determine. At Kisling, Nestico & Redick, we have found that the most common reasons a driver may be held liable in a car accident include:

What to Do After an Ohio Car Accident?

There are certain steps to take after a car accident to ensure your rights and health are protected, including:

  • Seek Medical Attention – After an accident, it’s essential that you visit the doctor to treat your injuries. If you fail to do so, the at-fault party’s insurance company may argue that you are exaggerating your injuries or did not suffer from any harm after the accident.
  • Call the Police – Even if you believe you are okay, you must call the police so that a report can be filed. Do not leave the scene until law enforcement has arrived, collected your information, and given you permission to go.
  • Don’t Volunteer Information – Do not apologize to the other driver or say anything to the police that may be used against you in a potential personal injury lawsuit.
  • Document the Scene – Take photos of the accident scene as well as any vehicle damage and injuries.
  • Do Not Sign Any Documents Relating to the Accident – The other driver’s insurance company may approach you and ask you to sign certain documents. You should never sign anything without the assistance of a lawyer.
  • Contact a Car Accident Attorney – Reach out to a car accident attorney who can help you establish liability and ensure you are not taken advantage of by an insurer. They will assist you in collecting the fair compensation you may be entitled to.

Car Accident Liability FAQ?

How Is Fault & Liability Proven?

To assign responsibility for a car accident, you must demonstrate that the party in question acted with neglect. To establish negligence in a car crash, you must show:

  • A party had a duty to act reasonably under similar circumstances
  • This duty of care was breached
  • The breach caused your injuries
  • You suffered injuries as a result.

It takes evidence to identify who’s responsible for your car accident. Our attorneys will investigate, review the police and medical reports, any witness statements and properly assign liability. Then KNR will build the strongest possible case.

Is Ohio a “Fault” State?

Ohio follows a “fault” system when it comes to financial responsibility for car accident injuries, vehicle damage, and other losses. This means that the person who caused the accident is responsible for compensating anyone who suffered harm as a result. In most cases, this compensation comes from the at-fault driver’s insurance.

What If the Insurance Company Say’s I’m At-Fault

Insurance companies work hard to reduce what they owe by denying their policyholder was in the wrong. One way they do this is by refuting liability and casting the blame on the victim. By working with a lawyer, you can properly illustrate the factors that lead to your accident and present evidence that someone else’s recklessness caused your injuries.

Can I Share Liability for a Car Accident

Yes. Car accidents can have numerous contributing factors, and Ohio follows the comparative negligence law. This gives an injured party the right to seek compensation for injuries even if they were partially responsible. Under the comparative negligence law, damages are reduced by your degree of responsibility.

For example, if you were 10% liable and suffered $10,000 in damages, you’d be able to collect $9,000. However, if you are 51 % liable for the accident or more, then you cannot recover any compensation.

Contact an Attorney for Help Determining Liability

If you’ve been hurt in a car accident, it is in your best interest to contact the Ohio car accident attorneys of Kisling, Nestico & Redick right away. We will investigate your case and help you establish liability so that you may recover compensation for your damages. We will also protect your rights fight for compensation if your case develops into a personal injury trial.

For help with determining liability in Ohio car accidents, contact us at 1-800-HURT-NOW.