Liability in Right-Turn Car Crash Claims
Many car crashes happen when cars are making left or right turns. The turning driver needs to make a sound judgment about the speed of the approaching cars so he or she can complete the maneuver safely. If he or she pulls out into traffic at the wrong time, a dangerous crash could occur, especially if the approaching driver is speeding.
Assessing fault for these crashes can be complicated, as many factors may need to be considered. Below, learn more about fault in these types of crashes, including what may happen if you are found to be partially at fault.
The Bloomington auto accident lawyers at TSR Injury Law have in-depth knowledge of how fault is assessed after crashes, including how insurance companies try to blame victims or assign them too much fault for what happened.
What Causes Right-Turn Crashes?
These situations are often the result of a driver making a turn when he or she did not have enough time to pull out into oncoming traffic, which usually has the right of way. If you made a right turn on a red light at an intersection where this is prohibited, you could be found at fault for the crash.
That said, if an oncoming driver was speeding, he or she may be found partially at fault for the crash. If a driver changed lanes while in the intersection and crashed into a driver who made a right turn, he or she could also share fault for what happened. If a driver was making a right turn on a green light and was hit by an oncoming driver who ran a red light, the driver running the red light may be found entirely at fault for the crash.
Right-turn crashes could also be the result of distracted driving. For example, maybe an oncoming driver was texting while going through an intersection. Even though the right-turning driver may not have had the right of way, the distracted driver may be partially at fault for what happened.
While victims in right-turn crashes are often drivers, pedestrians and bicyclists could also get hit by a car making a right turn. Drivers must look for bicyclists and pedestrians when pulling forward to make a right turn. If they block a crosswalk, they could force pedestrians and bicyclists to move out into the intersection to continue crossing the street, putting them at risk for getting hit by oncoming cars. A common crash is the right-hand turning driver looks left for oncoming traffic but fails to also look right for pedestrians who are in the crosswalk. It seems like common sense, but drivers have to look both ways before turning.
What Happens if the Parties in a Crash are Partially at Fault?
You can pursue compensation after a car crash if you are less than 50 percent at fault for what happened. In other words, you cannot be more at fault than the other driver and receive compensation for your injuries or vehicle damages. If you are found partially at fault, but less than 50 percent, the total value of your compensation will be reduced according to the percentage of fault you are assigned. A driver found to be 10 percent at fault, such as for speeding, would see his or her compensation award reduced by 10 percent.
Again, anyone found to be more than 51 percent at fault will be prohibited from pursuing compensation for his or her damages not matter how injured they are. This is due to Minnesota’s modified comparative negligence law.
While you may be partially at fault for the crash, this is something you should discuss with a licensed attorney. You should not rely on the insurance company to make an accurate assessment of your fault for a crash. Insurers often try to assign more fault for a crash than should rightly be assigned. Insurers are for-profit businesses and will look for any way to avoid paying out compensation to crash victims.
If the insurance company calls you after a right-turn crash, you should avoid revealing too much. You can write down what you remember about the crash as soon as possible and discuss things with an attorney before talking to the insurance company. If you wait to write down what you remember, you could easily forget. Consulting with an attorney before giving an insurance statement is often the number one rule. Since the consultation is free, there is no reason not to seek legal help before talking to an insurance company.
The attorneys at TSR Injury Law have many years of combined experience helping victims of a variety of crashes and know how to assess whether you have a valid claim and whether you may be partially at fault for a crash.
Have Questions About Your Legal Options? Call TSR Injury Law Today
We understand crash victims often have a lot of questions about the legal process. We have helped numerous crash victims over more than 20 years in practice, recovering millions in compensation on their behalf.
There is no cost or obligation to meet with us to discuss your crash and whether you may have a valid claim for compensation. That means there is no risk to you, and we welcome your call.
Even if you were partially to blame for a right-turn crash, you may still be eligible to pursue compensation.