Can You Determine Fault by Location of Damage in a Car Accident?

Vehicle damage is often used to help determine car accident fault in Georgia. This type of evidence is more useful in some crashes than others but is usually not the only factor considered.

Vehicle damage usually reveals the point of impact and suggests the type of accident that occurred: rear-end, side-impact, or head-on. This may be enough to suggest which driver is at fault.

If you are involved in a crash, let Athens car accident lawyer Brady M. Larrison review your case for free. Contact us at Larrison Law Firm Auto Accident and Personal Injury Attorneys today.

Why does fault matter in a car accident?

With insurance in a car crash, Georgia is an “at-fault” state, which means that the driver who caused the accident is liable for any damages. Therefore, it is critical to gather as much evidence as possible when taking legal action to recover compensation.

Situations Where Damage Can Be Used as Evidence of Fault

Determining fault by the location of the damage in some crashes is easy, while in others, fault is not so obvious.

Rear-end collision

In a rear-end collision, the damage is located on the back of the front vehicle, and the front of the rear vehicle. This typically points to the driver of the rear vehicle being at fault, especially if the damage to the back of the front vehicle is significant. In most cases, the rear vehicle was speeding, distracted, under the influence, or a combination of factors that led to the crash.

When is Fault Not So Obvious?

However, in some crashes, determining fault by the location of the damage is not so easy.

Side-impact Collision

In a side-impact collision, often referred to as a T-bone accident, the damage makes it appear that the driver who hit the side of the other vehicle is to blame. However, this may not always be the case.

If the driver that was impacted had the right-of-way, then the other driver that hit them may be liable for the damages.

Head-on Collision

In a head-on collision, the damage is usually significant. Typically, these types of crashes occur when one driver is either distracted, oversteers or understeers, or is under the influence and drifts into oncoming traffic. However, if there is no evidence of this, determining fault by the location of the damage is not so simple.

In some cases, this type of crash occurs when vehicles are turning at an intersection, making it more difficult to determine who is at fault.

Multi-vehicle accidents

Crashes with more than two cars involved, such as highway pile-ups, complicate how fault is determined. It can be difficult to tell who initiated a multi-vehicle accident and who skidded into who by looking at the wreckage alone.

Crash Reconstruction Experts Can Help Identify Who Is at Fault

Accident reconstruction experts play an important role in uncovering information about the lead-up and aftermath of a collision.

Crash reconstruction experts will inspect the vehicles and use photographs and tire marks to rebuild the events that led to the crash. In some cases, they may also determine that there were hidden factors that contributed to the crash, such as defective parts — which can result in additional legal claims.

These experts’ reports and testimony can provide much-needed insight to help you get the compensation you deserve. Our firm regularly works with crash reconstruction experts to rebuild accidents when the fault is unclear.

What Other Evidence Can Determine Car Accident Fault in Georgia?

Unfortunately, determining car accident fault in Georgia is not always easy. Many times, the location of the damage is not enough, and other evidence is needed.

When you are involved in a car crash and decide to seek legal action, it is important to gather as much information as possible. Brady M. Larrison at Larrison Law Firm Auto Accident and Personal Injury Attorneys can advise you about the information that is needed to prove your case.

Some of the other evidence that can be utilized includes:

Testimony from eyewitnesses

Those who were nearby when the accident happened can give their statement as to what they saw, which can help prove fault. They may identify who violated traffic laws. If you do speak to witnesses, make sure to get their names and contact information so they can be contacted if needed.

Footage from nearby surveillance cameras

If there are any surveillance cameras nearby, the footage from those cameras can be helpful in proving fault. Check for traffic light cameras and with nearby businesses to find out if there is any footage available. However, it is important to keep in mind that this is not always an option and, sometimes, even if there is surveillance footage, the angle makes it difficult to use.

Talk to an Athens Car Accident Lawyer for Free

If you are involved in a car crash in Georgia, let Brady M. Larrison at Larrison Law Firm Auto Accident and Personal Injury Attorneys review your case. He has represented the injured for over a decade and has the experience and expertise to ensure that you receive fair and reasonable compensation for your accident.

Schedule your free case evaluation today at our Loganville or Athens office. We are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

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