Determining Fault in Multi-Vehicle Accidents in Ohio
Sometimes car accidents involve more than one vehicle. When such an incident occurs, having a multi-vehicle accident lawyer can be a great help.
Multi-Vehicle Accidents in Ohio
Car accidents that involve multiple vehicles are often much more catastrophic than single-car collisions. They are almost always caused by one driver that starts a chain reaction.
If you’ve sustained an injury in a multi-vehicle Ohio car accident, you should speak to an experienced multi-vehicle accident lawyer at Kisling, Nestico & Redick today. Contact us at 1-800-HURT-NOW to schedule a free, initial case evaluation.
Common Causes of Multi-Vehicle Accidents
There are a variety of factors that may increase the risk of a multi-car pile up. Some of the most common factors include:
- Poor Weather Conditions
When the roads are icy or snowy and visibility is poor, multi-vehicle accidents are likely to occur. This is because drivers may not be able to react in time when they come upon a collision.
Vehicles that are speeding are often unable to stop in time to avoid an accident. Speeding-related multi-vehicle accidents are widely seen on highways.
Rubbernecking is when multiple drivers stop to look at the scene of an accident, become distracted, and increase their chances of getting involved in a wreck.
- Traveling Close Together
When vehicles are too close to each other, it can be difficult for drivers to stop when there is a hazard.
- Nowhere for Vehicles to Go
If an accident happens, surrounding drivers can’t simply veer out of the way. If they hit their brakes or swerve to avoid the collision, they can cause a chain reaction.
Who’s at Fault for a Multi-Car Accident?
Like other car accidents, fault and liability are determined based on the unique factors involved. However, there are some common car accidents with similar causes that typically involve mullite vehicles. Examples of these multi-car accidents include rear-end collisions, head-on crashes, and lane-changing accidents.
Rear-End Pile Ups
These represent the most common multiple vehicle accident. Sometimes called a “chain-reaction” accident, this is where one car rear-ends another, propelling it into the car in front of it, and so on. In most cases, the first car to rear-end another is usually at fault because that vehicle had the best chance to avoid the collisions
Complications sometimes arise in multi-car rear-end accidents because more than one car can be responsible. For instance, if a car hits another vehicle from behind, but that car should have been able to avoid hitting the car directly in front of it, the second car could be partially liable for damages to the third vehicle.
Comparative Negligence for Multi-Car Accidents
Whether it involves a rear-end crash, head on collision, or some other accident, more than one party can be liable. When both drivers share fault, insurance adjusters will investigate and assign a percentage of fault to each driver.
If both drivers are liable, they can recover damages according to their degree of responsibility. This comparative negligence standard reduces the damages someone can recover according to their percentage of negligence. For example, if you were found to be 20% negligent, you could only recover 80% of your total damages instead of the full amount.
Multi-Vehicle Accident Injuries
When a multi-car pile-up occurs, anyone involved may suffer from serious injuries such as:
- Neck and back injuries
- Spinal cord injuries
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Bone fractures
In the most serious multi-vehicle collisions, one person or multiple people may lose their lives. Since an injury or fatality can leave you with damages, you may be entitled to collect compensation in a personal injury lawsuit. The compensation can help ease the financial burden the accident has caused. Contact a multi-vehicle accident lawyer from Kisling, Nestico & Redick today to learn how we can help.
What to Do After a Multi-Vehicle Car Accident
In order to take care of your health and protect your legal rights, it’s important to understand the steps to take after a multi-car accident:
- Call the Police
Calling the police can help you obtain a report of the accident which can be used later to support your case.
- Gather Contact Information
Write down the contact information, license plate numbers, and details of all the other drivers involved in the crash. The contact information of any witnesses should be recorded as well.
- Document the Scene
Take pictures of the entire accident scene, all the vehicles involved, and any injuries you’ve sustained.
Reach Out to a Multi-Vehicle Accident Lawyer
The sooner you contact a lawyer who specializes in multi-vehicle accidents, the higher your chances are of securing the fair compensation you may deserve.
Insurance Companies in Multi-Vehicle Accidents
In multi-car collisions, several insurance companies become involved. After this type of accident, you may find that several insurers contact you and ask you various questions. They may also attempt to get you to accept a compensation offer.
It’s important to understand that insurance companies are in business to make money. Therefore, they want to pay you as little as possible and will likely try to convince you to simply accept their offer and avoid hiring an attorney. If you accept their offer without consulting your lawyer, you’ll likely be stuck with a small amount of money that does not cover all of your damages.
Why Legal Representation is Important
Consulting a skilled lawyer is important in any car accident case. However, is imperative in one that involves multiple vehicles. Multi-vehicle accidents are complicated. In some instances, multiple drivers may be liable for the accident. Additionally, each driver involved in these types of crashes may have a different account of what happened. If this is the case and the police and insurance companies determine liability, you may be at fault for an accident that was, in fact, not caused by you.
To ensure you are not held responsible for the negligence of other drivers, you should seek legal representation immediately after a multi-vehicle accident. A lawyer may help you recover compensation for the following damages:
- Vehicle damage
- Medical expenses
- Lost wages
- Pain and suffering
- Disability and disfigurement
- Mental anguish
Call a Multi-Vehicle Accident Lawyer Today
Instead of navigating the complexities of a multi-car pileup on your own, reach out to a multi-vehicle accident lawyer from Kisling, Nestico & Redick today. While you may want to navigate this process on you own to get it over with as quickly as possible, it’s important to retain the counsel of an attorney who can help guide you through the legal process and make sure your rights remain protected.