Determining who is at fault in a car accident can be a complicated situation.
When you are in an auto accident in St. Louis, the first thing you have to do is to determine who is at fault and liable to pay for any damages and injuries. When only two cars are involved, deciphering who is at fault can be simple. But there are times when other factors come into play and figuring out who is liable can become pretty complicated. Missouri is an at-fault state, which means whoever is found at fault and negligent for the accident is liable to pay for the cost of damages.
Although it is an at-fault state, Missouri uses a pure comparative fault system. That means that drivers are awarded damages based on a predetermined percentage of how responsible they are for an accident. Once the cost of the damages is calculated, each party is responsible for paying their portion or percentage of liability.
Since St. Louis goes by the pure comparative fault system, it’s always a good idea to hire a St. Louis auto accident attorney to protect yourself. If the accident is not clearly due to the negligence of just one driver, you will want a professional who can help you go through the complexity of ascribing percentages of liability. The reality is that the less you are found to be at fault or negligent in any car accident, the less you have to pay for the other party’s injuries, and the more you are entitled to receive.
Why Hire a Car Accident Attorney
A St. Louis car accident attorney can help you to figure out your liability in a car accident so that you aren’t left holding the bag. One of the things they do is helping to collect facts about the case. To prove your case, you will need certain types of documentation to prove liability. Although it’s not admissible should your auto accident go to court, having a police report at the scene of the accident is an integral step to proving your percentage of fault, or lack thereof. A police report is also a good bargaining chip for your lawyer to use during the settlement and negotiation process.
An excellent St. Louis auto accident lawyer will also help you to gather other information like eyewitness accounts, interviewing the responding officers, and to take pictures that can demonstrate the events of what happened to either prove your innocence or to prove the negligence of the other driver. The attorney will know the proper steps to take to prove your case in court.
Contact a Personal Injury Attorney
Although you can handle a car accident case on your own through an insurance company settlement, it is important for you to understand that the insurance company’s job is to limit their losses, not to compensate you. So it is always a good idea to have the help of a St. Louis auto accident attorney at your side to walk you through the complexity of deciphering fault, who is liable for damages and injuries, and how much each driver is entitled to recover.