Can You Seek Compensation for a Single-Vehicle Crash?
October 20, 2021
Most car crash claims involve two vehicles, and one driver often bears most of the fault for the accident. However, even when only one vehicle suffers damage, another party may sometimes have played a role in causing the crash.
These are known as single-vehicle crashes, and they happen more often than you may think. While the driver is often at fault, other parties may bear some liability. That means drivers involved in single-vehicle crashes may still be able to pursue compensation for their damages.
If you were injured in a single-vehicle crash, give us a call today to discuss potential legal options for pursuing compensation. At Phillips Law Group, there are no upfront fees for our services, which means no financial risk in contacting our firm or working with us on your claim.
Give us a call to discuss your crash in a free consultation. 1-800-706-3000
Reasons Other Parties May Be Liable for Single-Vehicle Crashes
There are many reasons why single-vehicle crashes occur. Drivers may lose control of their vehicles after a tire blowout and hit a sign or a tree after running off the road. An animal could dart out into the road and the driver may not have enough time to stop or swerve to avoid a collision. Sometimes drivers crash because they are impaired or distracted.
Here are some additional examples of how a driver may not share all the fault for a single-vehicle crash:
- Debris/cargo fell off a vehicle, such as a commercial truck
- He or she swerved to avoid hitting another driver making an unsafe lane change
- There were large potholes or other dangerous road conditions
- A bicyclist or pedestrian darted out into the road
- He or she lost control due to defective brakes, steering components or other defective car parts
- Lack of clear instructions or signals to help the driver safely make it through a construction zone
Other parties that may bear fault for a single-vehicle crash in these situations could include:
- Trucking companies
- Cargo-loading companies
- Other drivers
- Government entities responsible for maintaining a stretch of road
- Product designers or manufacturers
Even if you are found partially at fault for a crash, you may be able to recover compensation for your damages from another party. Under Arizona law, any compensation you or your Phoenix car accident attorney recover will be reduced based on your percentage of fault. In other words, if you are 10 percent to blame for a single-vehicle crash, your compensation award would also be reduced by 10 percent.
Proving Another Party May Be at Fault for a Single-Vehicle Crash
In a car crash claim, the victim must prove another party was negligent and link this negligence to the crash and resulting injuries.
In a single-vehicle crash claim, you would need to prove you would not have crashed without the other party’s negligence. For example, if you struck a piece of cargo that fell from a commercial truck, you would need to prove you were unable to avoid it.
Linking a single-vehicle crash to another party’s actions can be complicated. The insurance company will likely dispute your claim and argue the crash was due to your own negligence. You will need strong evidence to show there was no way to avoid a crash. You may also need to disprove claims by the insurance company that you were distracted or driving recklessly.
Contacting a Lawyer
If you are unsure if you have a case, we recommend contacting an attorney for legal assistance. Even if your claim has already been denied or the insurance company gave you a low offer that they say is final, we may still be able to help.
It is important to remember that once you accept and sign off on a settlement, the agreement becomes binding. Therefore, we strongly recommend that you do not accept any offer before speaking with an attorney.
While contacting an attorney right away is a crucial step, so is collecting evidence at the scene. Call 9-1-1 so the police will come to the scene and file a report. If you crashed because of another driver, and he or she stopped, be sure to exchange information. If you are physically able and can do so safely, take pictures of the damage to your vehicle and the hazard or obstacle that led to the crash.
Getting Medical Treatment
Get to the hospital right away so a doctor can diagnose your injuries and document in your medical records that they were caused by the accident. This step is important to your health and helps link your injuries to the crash.
Filing a Claim With Your Own Insurance Policy
If you hit an animal or a falling object, you may be able to file a claim against the comprehensive coverage in your own insurance policy. This claim would be for damage to your vehicle, not medical expenses. It is important to note there is a deductible with this coverage, which you must pay before the coverage kicks in.
The collision insurance in your own policy should cover any damage to your car caused by:
- Running over a pothole
- Hitting a fence, tree or utility pole
- Crashing because of an icy road
- And more
It is important to note collision and comprehensive coverage are optional. This means that you would only have them in your policy if you chose to purchase these coverages.
Unsure if You Have Legal Options? Call Today
When a crash causes significant injuries, compensation helps the victim to start putting his or her life back together. However, insurance companies rarely offer full compensation when a crash victim pursues a claim on his or her own.
Victims who hire attorneys to represent them often recover larger compensation awards. Insurance companies know experienced attorneys with successful track records might take them to court.
Phillips Law Group has been helping crash victims for nearly 30 years, and we have obtained more than $1 billion in compensation. We have dealt with many insurance companies and recovered the compensation our clients needed.
Free consultation. No upfront fees or obligations. Call 1-800-706-3000
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