Generally, the driver moving in reverse is legally at fault for a backing-up car crash that occurs. However, you will still need to gather evidence and document what happened to prove negligence and liability in your collision.
Determining who is responsible for a backing-up car accident when both drivers moved in reverse is more complicated and may require a thorough investigation. Establishing responsibility is important because most states allow the victim to seek compensation from the negligent driver.
Documenting What Happened Through an Investigation into a Back-Up Accident
When you suffer injuries or significant property damages in a reversing vehicle accident, you should contact the local police for a collision report. Law enforcement officers will conduct the first investigation into what happened, including documenting the accident scene, gathering general information, and identifying witnesses.
They may issue citations based on what happened and assign fault in this way. However, this may not always be true. In many cases, reversing vehicle crashes occur in parking lots or similar areas where strict traffic laws may not be in place. Following a crash, the two drivers’ insurers will also investigate what happened, as will a car accident attorney if they choose to work with one.
This investigation could include a lot more evidence, such as:
- The accident report filed by the police
- Video or photos of the accident
- Eyewitness interviews
- Physical evidence
- A survey of the accident scene
- Accident reconstruction
- Expert testimony
- Each party’s relevant medical records
- Documentation of damages
If you choose to work with our personal injury firm, we will use our experience, knowledge, and resources to gather as much evidence to support your claim as possible. This may make it easier to negotiate with the at-fault motorist’s insurance company and secure a just settlement for your damages.
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How do Backing-Up Collisions Occur?
Most backing-up crashes do not occur on the road, although this is possible. Instead, they happen in:
- Parking lots
- Garages and ramps
Some of the scenarios that can lead to these collisions include:
- A motorist backed out of a space into another car that was driving down the lane
- A motorist backed out of a space into a car waiting for their spot
- The driver backed into a parked car
- Two drivers backed up at the same time
- A motorist backed into a fixed object
- A driver backed into a pedestrian
Reversing Car Accidents Can Cause Serious Injuries
Many people think of backing-up vehicle crashes as minor parking lot dings and scrapes, but they can cause serious injuries. Most do not occur at high speeds, but they can still lead to whiplash, broken bones, and even life-altering injuries.
When they involve a driver who accidentally leaves their vehicle in reverse instead of drive or mixes up the pedals, they can occur at increased speeds, as well. Pedestrians, cyclists, and others not inside a vehicle are at a particularly high risk of serious injuries.
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Make Sure You Seek Medical Care After a Back-Up Accident
Since back-up accidents can cause severe injuries, it’s important to see a doctor as soon as possible. Although you may not have had to go to the emergency room immediately after an accident, you may have still suffered injuries. The longer you go without treatment, the worse they could become.
This can also compromise your case. If an insurer believes you contributed to your losses, they may try to undervalue or outright deny your claim. Protect your health and your case by seeking treatment.
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Recovering Damages in Your Backing-Up Car Accident
If you suffered injuries or property damages because of a reversing car accident, you may be able to seek and recover compensation for your expenses and losses. By proving the at-fault driver caused the accident and gathering support for your insurance claim, you can demand that their insurer pay out a fair settlement to cover your losses.
You may want to work with our personal injury law firm on your insurance claim. Our team will handle the investigation and build support for your case. Then, we will navigate the claims process and negotiate with the other driver’s insurer.
In some cases, they may need to take your case to trial to recover money damages, although this is rare. How long you have to start a lawsuit depends on your state and other factors. Generally, you have:
- Two years in Alabama under Ala. Code § 6-2-38
- Three years in Arkansas per Ark. Code Ann. § 16-56-105
- One year in Louisiana under La. Civ. Code Art. 3492
- Three years in Mississippi per Miss. Code Ann. § 15-1-49
However, there are exceptions. You should consider speaking with our attorney as soon as possible after your accident. You could have more or less time based on the facts of your crash. Your lawyer can explain the timelines in your case during your initial consultation.
Talk to a Morris Bart, LLC, Team Member for Free Now
At the Morris Bart law firm, our team provides free consultations for victims of traffic accidents near our 16 locations across the Gulf South. The areas we serve include all parts of Alabama, Arkansas, Louisiana, and Mississippi. We are a contingency fee firm that fights to secure compensation for the injured accident victims we represent.
You can get started with your case assessment today by calling us. We have someone available to speak with you now, so reach out to us now.
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