Liability in a Rear-end Collision

A rear-end collision isn’t always the fault of the rear driver. In some cases, the lead driver may be to blame. For a review of liability and types of negligence in a rear end case, comparative negligence laws, and how you can learn more about recovery options, read on.

Who’s liable for a rear-end collision? 

Liability is determined based on who was at fault for the accident. While rear end, speeding, and distracted driving are often causes of a rear end collision on the part of the rear driver, a rear driver isn’t always at fault.

In fact, the lead driver may be held liable or partially liable for a rear end collision in the event that the lead driver acted negligently.

Types of negligence on the part of the lead driver that can cause a rear end accident include the following. 

  • Stopping suddenly without reason
  • Failing to repair broken brake lights
  • Not driving at a reasonable speed
  • Not paying attention to road hazards
  • Driving while distracted or impaired, such as texting and driving
  • Failure to use turn signals
  • Not controlling a vehicle

In the event that the lead driver was to blame for the collision, then the rear driver may be able to file a claim for damages.

Ohio’s Comparative Negligence Laws 

In a rear end collision, it is not uncommon for both drivers to be partially at fault for the accident. When this occurs, comparative negligence laws may apply. Under Ohio’s comparative negligence laws, a driver who is injured in an accident still has the right to recover damages regardless of whether or not he or she was partially at fault, but his/her damages will be reduced by the percentage of negligence.

If you are found to be more than 50 percent at fault for a rear-end accident, however, than you may not recover losses from the other driver. As Ohio follows a traditional tort system, if you were 50 percent or less at fault for your rear end collision, and if you’ve suffered damages, you can file a claim with the other driver’s insurance company. You may also file directly against the other driver.

Learn More About Filing a Claim after a Rear End Collision 

Proving fault in a rear end collision can be tricky and may require the help of experts in the field. To help retain these experts and build a case in your favor, you need the legal professionals at Bressman Law. Our car accident attorneys can help you to prove the fault of the other driver, and will assist you in filing your claim for damages.

Whatever the outcome of your case, we promise to support you every step of the way. Ask us your legal questions by visiting our website today, or call us at 877-538-1116 now. And remember, clams in Ohio must be filed in no more than two years, so act quickly!