In Texas a driver is not automatically at fault for rear-ending someone in Texas. Although the driver who hit a car from behind is most often at fault, both drivers can be at fault and/or neither driver can be at fault, so rear-end collisions merit a closer inspection.
Most Common Traffic Violations in Rear End Collisions
Rear-end collisions are commonly caused by distracted driving such as illegally texting and driving, slow-moving cars, heavy traffic, reckless driving, stopping short to avoid hitting something, following too closely, bad weather, and poor road conditions.
Failure to Control Speed is a Texas traffic violation most often cited following a rear-end collision. Section 545.351 of the Texas Transportation Code, entitled “Maximum Speed Restrictions,” codifies this violation by stating that a driver may not drive faster than is reasonable and prudent under the existing circumstances and requiring drivers to control their vehicle’s speed to avoid colliding with another person or vehicle already on or entering the roadway.
Rear-end accidents can involve two cars or several cars, depending on the speed and traffic conditions. A leading driver (driver in front) can be found at fault for being rear-ended if the other party can prove the leading driver acted negligently.
Legal Options After a Texas Rear End Collision
Even if you were the driver in the rear, if the other driver cut you off or pulled out in front of you, you could win a car accident lawsuit. Texas is a fault-based car accident state, meaning that fault determines who is responsible for the resulting damages caused by an auto wreck. Our state uses a concept called comparative negligence, which means that each party is responsible for their percentage of contribution to the incident and will pay that percentage of the losses accordingly. If a judge or jury finds the plaintiff, the one filing the lawsuit, 51% or more at fault, they will recover nothing.
However, if you were not the person who caused the wreck, then you have the right to recover a rear-end collision insurance claims payment, settlement, or verdict at trial. That means the person who is at fault for the car crash will be held financially responsible for the damages, losses, and bills you are paying because of the car accident injuries you suffered.
Typically, the person’s car insurance will cover accident-related expenses, including lost wages, vehicle damage, medical expenses, and other related costs. Complications can easily arise such as the insurance company not wanting to pay when the time comes to seek compensation for the car accident damages caused by the other driver, or if the driver was drinking and driving or you were hit by an uninsured driver. The experienced car accident lawyers at Liggett Law Group can know are here to discuss your rights and help you learn your legal options.