Who’s at Fault for a Rear-End Collision in Alabama?

Rear-end crashes are the most common type of car accident. These crashes account for almost one in every three accidents.

But these are far from minor collisions. Drivers and their passengers can suffer serious injuries in rear-end accidents.

While most rear-end crashes are the fault of the back driver, it is not always the case in every accident. You should always contact an experienced attorney to learn whether you may be eligible for financial compensation. Steve Morris Law represents car accident victims in the legal process and will give your case a close evaluation at your free consultation. Contact our Anniston car accident lawyer to begin your claim.

Causes of Rear-End Car Accidents

Rear-end accidents occur dozens of times each day throughout the state of Alabama. Usually, the driver of the rear car makes a mistake that causes them not to see the car in front of them in time. They may misjudge the following distance, or they may not even stop in time at all.

Common causes of rear-end traffic accidents include:

  • Distracted driving
  • Malfunctioning or poorly maintained brakes
  • Excessive speeding
  • Reckless driving
  • Drunk driving
  • Excessive tailgating

The number of serious rear-end car crashes has been increasing in recent years in part from cell phone use while driving. Drivers who are texting, or checking their social media, do not see the cars stopped or traveling slower in front of them.

Liability Rules in a Rear-End Car Accident

Alabama rear end car accident law has a presumption that the driver of the rear car is the one who was negligent and responsible for the accident. The theory is that they should have seen the car in front of them and stopped in time.

In most cases, the insurance companies would agree on liability for the crash without more evidence being presented. This rule is the default one in rear-end accidents.

However, the rule is a presumption, and it is not ironclad. It is sometimes possible for the driver of the front car to be held liable for the accident. If they stopped short in front of the driver behind them, they would be the one at fault. The front car driver may not have seen a traffic signal until it was too late, or they may have cut off another car in traffic.

However, as the rear car driver, you would need evidence that would overcome the presumption of fault. Many attorneys are leery of accepting a case from the rear car driver because they know that it is a longshot. If you come with witness statements and a police report that show what happened, you may have a better chance of fighting for compensation.

Liability Rules When Three or More Cars Are Involved in a Rear-End Crash

The matter becomes more complicated when three or more cars are involved in an accident.

There are sometimes “pileup” crashes on local roads and highways. Once one car strikes the vehicle in front, it may be difficult for others to stop and avoid the accident, especially when the crash occurs at a higher speed.

Multi-car crashes could happen in different ways:

  • The back car driver could hit the middle car, causing the middle car to strike the front car. In that case, the driver of the back car would be responsible to pay for the damages associated with the crash (assuming there is no evidence to the contrary)
  • The middle car driver could strike the front car, causing the car behind to hit the middle car. Then, the middle car driver would be liable (assuming that no evidence disturbs the presumption).

However, these are also just presumptions and the actual liability will depend on the specific facts of your crash.

You Must Pursue Full Compensation for Rear-End Car Accidents

Rear-end car accidents can cause serious and permanent injuries. Even though the fatality rate associated with these crashes is lower, drivers may suffer whiplash from their neck snapping forward. Whiplash can lead to head and neck damage. It can also cause a concussion and brain damage. Do not make the mistake of thinking that whiplash is a minor injury that is not worth much in compensation. You could end up leaving money on the table.

You have a right to be fully compensated for a rear-end car accident when the other driver was at fault. Not only can you receive economic damages, such as your medical bills and lost wages, but you would also be entitled to pain and suffering. These damages can be considerable when you have suffered a significant neck or back injury. You need an attorney who can fight for you to receive full compensation for your injuries.

Contact an Anniston Car Accident Lawyer Today

If you have been injured in a car accident in Alabama, you could get a large settlement check if someone else was at fault. To maximize your compensation, you should contact an experienced attorney today. Steve Morris Law represents injured accident victims in the Anniston area and statewide as they seek to be paid for their car accident injuries. You can speak with an attorney today by calling us at 256-357-9211 or messaging us online. The consultation is free, and you owe us nothing unless you win.

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