Very rarely is one person totally at fault in a car accident. Usually, both drivers are a little bit at fault. And nobody is ever going to admit that they’re at fault. We’re always quick to point the finger at someone else.
There are a few exceptions to the rule. For example, the rear driver is almost always at fault in rear-end car accidents. And you can hardly blame the victim in a drunk driving accident. But, for the most part, multi-car accidents have enough blame to go around.
This can make it difficult to assess blame for legal purposes. If both drivers are at fault, who’s insurance company is responsible? Can you sue someone if you were partly at fault?
Car accident lawyers in Virginia Beach know how to handle cases like this.
Virginia Beach Car Accident Lawyers Understand Comparative Fault
Most states have laws that protect you if you’re partly at fault in a car accident. Virginia is not one of them. In Virginia, if you’re even partly at fault, you can’t file a lawsuit against the other driver.
You can file an insurance claim if you’re partly at fault. There is a chance that the other driver’s policy will pay your claim. This is more likely if the other driver is mostly at fault. Rather than risk losing in court, the insurance company may settle your claim.
If they refuse to pay your claim, you’re going to need a Virginia Beach car accident lawyer. He will have to fight with the insurance company to get your claim paid. If they won’t pay your claim, you may have a problem.
The law in Virginia is called “contributory negligence.” This means, if you contributed to your accident at all, your claim is barred. You cannot recover from the defendant. The law is harsh and a bit unkind.
Will the Insurance Company Pay Your Claim?
If you’re lucky, the defendant’s insurance company will pay your claim. You could get a check in a week or two and there won’t be any issues. However, they could deny your claim.
The insurance company may deny your claim for many reasons, including:
- The policy wasn’t valid at the time of the accident
- The driver wasn’t on the policy
- You are believed to be at fault
- They don’t believe you have injuries
- They doubt the severity of your injuries
- You have a history of filing false insurance claims
If this happens, your Virginia Beach car accident attorney will have to appeal your claim. He’ll reach out to the insurance adjuster and try to negotiate a settlement of your claim.
Both drivers know they risk losing their case in court. Since both parties are at fault, the court may throw the entire case out. If this happens, nobody can recover. However, there is a chance that the defendant will lose. This could be very expensive for them.
How Can Your Virginia Beach Car Accident Attorney Help?
Your attorney will try to negotiate a settlement of your claim. It depends on the circumstances of your case. If you’re only minimally at fault, the insurance company may want to settle.
If your case goes to court and the defendant is mostly at fault, you could recover. Your attorney will have to show that you aren’t at fault at all. Knowing that the defendant would have to prove a negligence case against you, your attorney may be able to pull off a win. However, this is a risk too.
Car accident attorneys have relationships with the insurance companies. They know which ones are more likely to settle, and also know how to deal with insurance adjusters. They have a much better shot at getting your claim paid than you do on your own.
Contact a Virginia Beach Car Accident Attorney Today
If you’ve been in a car accident, you need to call a Virginia Beach car accident attorney. He can help you get your insurance claim approved. He can also represent you if you need to go to court.
Call and schedule your free initial consultation today. You can ask your attorney any questions you may have. He can review your case and let you know what it’s worth. He can even review your file to see if you’re partly at fault.
The consultation is free and you pay nothing until you settle your case.