If you’ve been in a car accident, one of your first thoughts may be, “How did this happen?” After checking on others to determine major injuries, your next thought may be, “Whose fault is this accident?” Financial worries may creep in early after a crash, even a minor one. You may wonder if the other driver is honest. Will they tell the truth about what happened? If they rear-ended you at a stoplight, will they say you were trying to back up? A million thoughts run through your mind with the adrenaline rush of a car accident. Let’s look at how to prove you are not at fault in a car accident.
Calling In Law Enforcement
In Texas, it’s part of the process to investigate a crash. It is crucial to call the police if:
- There is an injury
- There is a fatality
- Vehicles are immovable
- You suspect a driver is intoxicated
- A driver has no insurance
- A driver leaves the scene
If you suspect you could have injuries or if anyone in your car might have injuries, it’s important to call law enforcement immediately so that they can get statements from all drivers involved. The police report may also include the officer’s evaluation of what happened. When writing the report, law enforcement will talk with all drivers and consider their injuries and frame of mind.
A police report is an important tool to show that you are not at fault. You want to ensure that the officer has the correct information and that you show them pertinent information about the accident such as any dashcam photos.
Who Is At Fault?
It matters who is at fault in Texas because the law operates on comparative negligence statutes. These statutes state that you pay for the other driver’s damages in proportion to your amount of fault. The percentage you contribute to the accident is the percentage you owe of the total damages. If you are 60% at fault for the accident, you will owe the other driver 60% of their total amount of damages awarded in negotiations settlements or a courtroom.
When a car accident causes you to face injuries, you may have medical bills. If you are 100% not at fault, then the other person’s liability insurance will cover your medical bills and other damages up to the amount of their coverage. It matters who is at fault, especially when someone must pay the bill for extensive damages or injuries.
Prove You are Not At Fault in a Car Accident
There are many ways you can show an insurance adjuster and law enforcement officers that you did not cause the accident. Describe what happened clearly and carefully, or call your attorney to be present with you and help you answer questions productively. Taking pictures of all damages at the scene can help later on. Law enforcement and insurance adjusters rely on pictures, statements, and diagrams to fully understand what happened.
Witness statements may also prove unbelievably helpful. If anyone in the vicinity saw the accident, ask them if you can record them speaking about what happened or if they would make a brief written statement of what happened and sign it. Make sure to collect their phone number and address so you or an insurance adjuster can contact them later if need be.
Taking photos is an excellent way to establish the area of an accident and what mitigating factors may be involved. A picture is worth 1000 words in this case. If someone is driving without lights at 11 pm and you have a photo to prove it, that photo is like gold.
Make Wise Statements
Generally, an insurance adjuster will ask you to make a recorded statement over the phone about what happened so that they can determine fault. It can be crucial to have your attorney present at this interview. Your lawyer understands what kinds of information they are searching for and can coach you about what you can say and what is better left unsaid.
Hire an Attorney
Ask for help to prove you are not at fault in a car accident. Whether you carry none of or some of the blame for the accident, hiring an attorney to walk through the process with you can help you feel more hopeful about the outcome. Personal injury attorneys work with the insurance adjusters, other lawyers, and witnesses to bring about the best outcome for any claims you need to make. An attorney will also help you file a lawsuit if the case is not going your way.
We Can Help
At Jarrett Law Firm, we work with those in car accidents to bring about the best outcome from a scary and often painful experience. If you worry about paying medical bills, talking with an insurance adjuster, covering lost wages, or proving your innocence in the accident, contact us for help. Our experienced personal injury team can help you through every step until you find yourself looking forward to daily life again. Contact us today and find out how we can help.