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Determining Fault After a Car Accident

January 12, 2022Auto Accident

If you get injured in a car accident in Colorado, one of the most important parts of the recovery process is determining fault. Since Colorado is a fault-based insurance state, you must identify and prove who caused your car accident before you can collect financial compensation from their insurance company. Take the following steps to complete this stage of your personal injury case.

Get the Other Driver’s Information

Do not leave the scene of a car accident without getting the information of the other driver. After a crash, exit your vehicle when it is safe to do so and exchange information with the other driver. This includes full names, addresses, phone numbers and insurance information. This information will enable you to file a claim with the other driver’s insurance provider in pursuit of financial benefits. If the other driver refuses to cooperate, don’t panic. Simply call the police to collect this information for you.

Don’t Admit Fault

In many car accident cases, fault is determined by one driver confessing to causing the crash. It is important never to admit fault for a car accident, however, even if you believe you are to blame. Admitting fault will end the car accident case before it begins – prior to an insurance company’s investigation of the crash. By not admitting fault, an investigation can be performed, which may find that the other driver or a third party is also at fault. This goes for all types of crashes, including bicycle accidents. It is better to be cautious and wait until a thorough investigation has been performed.

Get a Police Report

Calling the police after a serious car accident in Colorado is more than just a legal requirement; it is also one of the best ways to gather information about fault. The police can interview eyewitnesses, take official photographs and create an accident report that contains all of the key crash facts. You can then use this report as evidence that the other driver is at fault during your insurance claim. It is especially important to involve the police if you suspect the other driver of breaking a law, such as driving drunk. A ticket issued to the other driver can be proof of fault.

Speak to Eyewitnesses

Eyewitness accounts can provide important evidence during a car accident case. Eyewitnesses often see things that other people do not, such as the directions that both vehicles were traveling and their speeds. Before you leave the scene of the crash, speak to eyewitnesses for their statements. An insurance company may also communicate with witnesses and contact those who were involved in the crash to interview them and determine fault.

Take Pictures and Videos

An examination of the scene of the accident is often necessary to determine fault for a crash. This may be done at the scene by police officers and investigators. It may also be done using photographs that were taken at the scene of the accident before anything could be cleaned or removed. It is a good idea to take these photographs yourself to make sure you have them as a form of evidence for your car accident case.

Ask a Lawyer for Help

An insurance company’s investigation of a car accident may also entail in-person visits to assess the property damage, the hiring of crash reconstruction experts, a review of the claimant’s medical records, depositions, subpoenas, and more. The insurer will then give its opinion of who is to blame for the car accident. If you do not agree with the insurance company’s decision, you can file an appeal with help from an attorney.

A Denver car accident lawyer can help you with every stage of a car accident claim, including the determination of fault. A law firm has tools, resources and personnel to carefully evaluate a car accident for you and find out its cause. A lawyer can help you preserve and collect evidence to support a claim against the other driver or party involved in your crash. For more information about determining fault after a car accident, contact Dormer Harpring, LLC to request a free consultation.