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Am I at fault for avoiding a collision when the other driver enters my lane and the police report says it's NOT my fault too?

Arlington, TX |

I was driving on the highway and got into the middle lane because I saw cars merging into the highway so, to let them in, I moved to the middle. This car merged into the highway and then kept merging left into my lane. I saw this tried honking at him, but swerved trying to merge to my far left lane, lost control, and ended up hitting the wall and as a result found myself on the other side of the highway. I was always told to let the driver hit me, but I had recently found out I was pregnant and was scared the baby would be hurt. The police officer gave him the citation and said it was his fault for going into my lane. Anyway his insurance is saying it's my fault. It also turns out the vehicle he was driving (not his) was uninsured. He is but not the vehicle. So his insurance is saying this

Also, one very important thing I see I left out. He didn't hit me. I swerved so he wouldn't. Does this matter

Attorney Answers 8

Posted

You describe what could arguably be called an "emergency situation"; faced with an accident situation not of your own making but which you have to make a choice as to how to react. Under the "emergency doctrine", a court or jury can find that even if you chose the wrong "response " to the sudden emergency, you were not negligent. I am not sure, and don't subscribe to the belief, that you should have willing let the collision occur. Bottom line is that he is liable for changing lanes when it was not safe to do so, and should be responsible for your property damage (you don't say that you were hurt, so I am hoping that is the case). Insurance companies always try to save money by claiming it wasn't their insured's fault. If they don't want to pay you your just due, retain an attorney to sue, or if the amount of loss is low enough, bring a small claims court action.

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Posted

If you were established in your lane and the other driver violated your established position in said lane you are without fault for the collision. Consult an attorney and protect your rights.

Call for a free consultation at 727-937-1400 or visit us on the Web at www.serviceandjustice.com.

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Posted

Hire a lawyer ASAP and do not give any statements to anyone. At face value it does seems as though the fault lies with the other party.

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Posted

Negligence cases are very fact intensive and good lawyers can make arguments either way. You have in your favor that the police officer agreed with you on the scene, and some jurors still believe the police officer's opinion count for something. On the other hand, some police officers are not experts in accident reconstruction and they are really doing nothing more than a jury would do, listening to both sides of the story and making a judgment call in your favor. That being said, in this case the police officer is on your side.

As for what the other driver's insurance adjuster says, you can take that for a grain of salt. They always side with their insured and they always try to get out of paying anything if they can, that's their job, and thankfully, they are not on the jury, and unlike the police officer who can testify in trial, the insurance adjusters opinion is never even mentioned in Court.

As for the insurance, if the driver had insurance, his insurance will pay for his negligence, no matter what car he was driving.

If you were hurt, you should be talking to a lawyer. You might have other insurance coverage of your own that can come into play, PIP, Med Pay and if needed, Uninsured/Underinsured.

Negotiating with the insurance adjuster on your own can be very frustrating for individuals. As lawyers, we do it all the time. It is our job. So, under the circumstances, hire a lawyer, and take away any unneeded stress in your life as you go through your pregnancy. The last thing you need is to be dealing with insurance adjusters.

Just my two cents.

Good Luck to you.

Greg

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1 comment

Gregory H. Bevel

Gregory H. Bevel

Posted

and "no" the fact you didn't make contact the other driver is nothing magical in the equation. I have case where my motorcycle riding client had to lay down his motorcycle to avoid a collision that would have killed him had he not taken that evasive action. He avoided the collision with the other car, but was severely injured in the incident. Same argument in your case, you took evasive action to avoid a certain collision with a moving vehicle which could have been even worse for you and the other driver, the fact your two cars never collided with one another in the process doesn't absolve the other driver of fault.

Posted

I am sorry for your situation. You should get a medical check up to make sure that you and your baby are ok. From the basic facts, it seems as though you were in an emergency situation and acted in a reasonable manner, although, the other driver's insurance carrier is taking the position that your actions were not those of a "reasonable" driver. I would work with your carrier to fight the claim that you were at fault. You may also want to hire an attorney to review the matter.

One fact that I don't understand is your statement that "his insurance is saying it's my fault", then you indicate that he was driving a car that was "uninsured".

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2 comments

Asker

Posted

Yes, let me explain. He was driving a car that was not his. The car belonged to another driver. I called the insurance company that was on the yellow slip the police officer gave me containing all his information. The insurance told me the car had been taken off the insurance months ago. I found out that HE has insurance so I did contact a lawyer so we're going through HIS insurance. Does that make a little bit more sense? I was rushed to the ER both the baby and I are doing well. Thank God.

Asker

Posted

From what I was told the car belonged to someone else who didn't insure it, and this young man was driving an uninsured vehicle. He, I guess, has his own car and therefore has insurance. It's a really messy situation. The insurance company is pretty much saying since I didn't let him hit me I'm at fault. Is that legal? I've read several posts that that's how the law goes, but everything happened so fast, in a matter of seconds, but even in those matter of seconds I guess new mother instincts hit and I didn't want it to hit the baby. It was all I could think about even when it was all over.

Posted

The problem lies with trying to resolve an accident case with an insurance company without a lawyer. They aren't the richest companies in America, with their names on all the major skyscrapers because they deal fairly with people. Retain a car accident lawyer to investigate.

Only 29% Contingency Fee! Phone: 215-510-6755 www.InjuryLawyerPhiladelphia.com

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Posted

I agree with these lawyers. Your in the insurance denial game. You need a lawyer asap. If you haveny done so already do not agree to give a statement to the insurance company until you have talked with a lawyer.

Although Avvo makes it clear to consumers that attorney answers to questions are for general purposes only and do not establish an attorney-client relationship, some attorneys prefer to add their own disclaimers to answers. You can set your custom disclaimer here and it will be automatically added to your answers.

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Posted

If the other driver created a dangerous situation that you avoided, resulting in damages, the other driver can still be held liable. He doesn't get to walk away just because you didn't take up his open invitation to get into a wreck with HIS vehicle.

Sadly, insurance adjusters don't always see things that way. It may take a lawyer to get them to take responsibility-- and even then, your lawyer may have to file suit to get compensation. Seek an attorney immediately.

Also, the insurance situation creates some complications that your attorney will have to deal with.

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