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Fault? Car A had a minor accident with car B on the freeway. "A" disabled on the left shoulder 1-2 ft in the fast lane.

Roseville, CA |

Car C (my car) driving at 65-70 miles/hr in the fast lane did not see car A well at 10 PM since it was dark and there was no emergency light. I tried to avoid car A by turning sharp to the right and bearly scratched car A. My car totalled and I sustained minor injuries. Who is at fault? Do I have a chance?

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Attorney answers 6


You should have maintained a safe following distance, and you hit car A. Simply report it to the insurance company to resolve. That's why we have insurance.

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Both of you may be at fault. You for driving too fast for the conditions and the other car for failing to turn his emergency lights. However, if the emergency lights were on earlier but the battery had ran out, then he should have set some emergency candles. Nevertheless, Car A was on the shoulder and you were on the road. You will be comparatively at fault. Best of luck.

This answer is provided by Manuel A. Juarez, Esq., El Abogado de Accidentes de Autos de California: 510-206-4492. El Abogado de Accidentes de Autos provides answers of a general context. These answers are not intended to form an attorney client relationship. El abogado de Accidentes de Autos y Lesiones Personales practices in Antioch, Berkeley, Concord, Oakland, Hayward, Martinez, Newark, Richmond, San Francisco and San Rafael. El abogado de accidentes y lesiones is licensed only in California. This information is good only in California and it is not to be taken as legal advice on car accidents, personal injury, divorce, bankruptcy or in any other type of situation. Esta respuesta es del Abogado de Accidentes de Autos y Lesiones Personales de Acidentes de carros, Manuel A. Juárez, 510-206-4492. Abogado Hispano de Accidentes, Divorcios, Abogado Latino de Accidentes, y Abogado de Acidentes de Oakland, Hayward, San Francisco, y California. Estas respuesta son solo para información general y no consisten en consejo legal sobre divorcios, mantención de esposas, mantención de hijos o bancarrotas. Las respuestas son comentarios legales que no forman una relación de abogado y cliente. Manuel Juarez, Esq., esta licenciado solo en el Estado de California.


It is likely that you will be deemed some percentage of fault. There are experts and other evidence that you could gather but if you only sustained minor injuries it probably is not worth your time or expenses to hire such people to prove you were not at fault. Even with this evidence since you did not really have any contact with the other vehicle, it is likely you would be deemed a large percentage of fault. These are types of claims where you have to weight the economics of a claim compared to the recovery. There are some claims like these that may be worth pursuing if the injuries are serious. In your case, the costs of proving you were not at fault are likely to be more than what you would recover. I would report it to your insurance company. It would still not hurt to speak to an injury lawyer in California who could more fully explain to you your rights. Good luck. At least you only sustained minor injuries.

Call The Husband And Wife Law Team for help and answers to all your questions. What lawyers have to say: Any answers to questions are not to be considered legal advice or to create a lawyer-client relationship.


Sounds like you both were at fault though I would place more fault on the vehicle parked in the road. A person is required to move a disabled vehicle safely off the road in situations such as this when at all possible. Sounds like a busy interstate so all the more reason to move it.

I would definitely hire a lawyer to investigate, get your property damage taken care of with the other cars insurance and get checked out medically just to be safe.

Good Luck.

Robert Max Klein

Robert Max Klein


It is good that there are many lawyers - it gives consumers a choice. While George believes the parked car is more at fault, my gut is that car C is more at fault. But George give good advice - hire a lawyer, or at least consult with some.


It sounds like it is 100% fault on the disabled car. You came upon it in the dark while you were driving the speed limit (65 mph). The other vehicle had no emergency lights on. You hit that car tat was sticking out in the road which caused all of your damages and injuries. You should report it to your insurance carrier as a no fault accident. Be careful what you say to he other party's carrier. You need to speak to a personal injury attorney right away to strategize and review your injuries as well. I like your case and think you would be wise to vigorously pursue it. Good luck!

I am licensed in California only and my answers on Avvo assume California law. The above answer is for general information only and is based on the information you posted. Every case is fact dependent, so to get a thorough analysis of your situation, you will need to consult face to face with an attorney licensed to practice in the jurisdiction where the incident took place. Do not conclusively rely on any information posted online when deciding what to do about your case. No attorney-client relationship shall be created through the use reading of this response on Avvo. You should never delay seeking legal advice, disregard legal advice, or commence or discontinue any legal action because of information in this response.


It sounds like there may be fault on both sides here. It is a violation of the California Vehicle Code to stop a vehicle on the freeway without turning on the emergency flashers. You may be deemed "comparatively" at fault but, you should speak further with an attorney (on the phone or in person) about potential claims if you were injured.

Nothing in this communication should be construed as creating an attorney client relationship. This is for informational purposes only. Attorney will take no action on your behalf unless and until a written retainer agreement is signed. There are strict time deadlines on filing claims and, as such, you are advised to consult with and retain an attorney immediately to file such claims timely or you will lose any right to recovery.

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