Being in a car accident is always a stressful experience. On top of damage to personal property and dealing with injuries, drivers must go through the arduous process of reporting the accident to their insurance company. The main reason to contact your insurance company after an accident is to determine fault which will settle whose insurance company will pay for damages. Learn all about how insurance companies determine fault from your car accident attorney.
Determining Fault: Who Pays in Car Accident Claims?
In most states, including Maryland, the laws regarding car insurance are fault-based. This means that the driver who is found responsible for causing the accident is also responsible for paying for property damage and injuries that were sustained during the accident. The at-fault driver’s insurance company will pay for the damages, which can cause a raise in the insured’s rates depending on which company they are insured by.
When a claim is filed, the claimant’s insurance agency will investigate the accident to determine fault. Each driver will be asked for a recorded statement and additional evidence will be considered such as witness statements, police reports, and photos of the accident and subsequent damage. Depending on your insurance company, they may send an auditor to visually inspect the damage sustained by both vehicles.
Once the evidence has been gathered, the insurance agent determines who caused the accident and, therefor, who is financially responsible for paying for the damage caused. It is important to note that in Maryland (as well as Virginia, DC, Alabama, and North Carolina), a driver cannot recover for injury damages in a case in which they were found to be partly at fault. This means that if a driver turned into you but you were found to be speeding, you would both be considered partially at fault and thus neither of you could seek damages for sustained injuries.
Supplemental evidence can go a long way in determining fault which is why it is important to collect the appropriate information immediately after an accident occurs. Contacting the police to file an official report can help reduce the likelihood of a my-word-against-theirs argument as many drivers will refuse to admit fault. Photos taken at the scene will also help an insurance adjuster to determine fault in a fair and balanced manner.
MARYLAND CAR ACCIDENT ATTORNEY
If you have been involved in a car accident that was not your fault, please call Bruce Robinson & Associates. Your consultation with our trial lawyers is free and if we can help you, your case will be handled on a contingency fee basis, which means no out of pocket fee or expense to you. For a free consultation with our experienced trial lawyers,contact Robinson & Associates at 410.415.3841 or click www.marylandaccidentattorney.com today for your free consultation. We look forward to helping you!