Getting rear-ended while at an intersection or on a crowded highway can be a jarring experience even if you walk away without any injuries. In more serious situations, a collision of this nature can cause physical damage that lasts for months or even years on top of substantial financial and personal losses.
Pursuing civil recovery after rear-end car accidents in Seattle can be a deceptively complex endeavor, which is why having support from dedicated legal counsel could be so important to achieving a positive case result. In addition to helping with building a case for compensation, a knowledgeable car crash attorney could provide irreplaceable assistance with establishing how someone else was to blame for your incident.
Demonstrating Fault for a Rear-End Wreck
In most situations, the at-fault party in a Seattle rear-end car accident is the person driving the rearmost vehicle, often because they were distracted by something or someone in their vehicle, following too closely or “tailgating,” or exceeding the speed limit. Compared to many other types of auto accident litigation, proving fault under these circumstances can be relatively straightforward, since eyewitness accounts and patterns evident in vehicle damage and debris should show exactly what happened and exactly who caused the incident to occur.
However, just because the rearmost driver is usually at fault for this type of accident does not mean they always are, nor does it mean that the driver who is primarily to blame always bears 100 percent of the total fault. For example, if the driver in front braked suddenly and without warning, drove without functioning taillights or running lights, or reversed unexpectedly, they might be partially or even primarily to blame for being rear-ended.
In this kind of scenario, Revised Code of Washington §4.22.005 allows a court to assign the injured plaintiff filing suit a percentage of fault for their own losses and reduce whatever damage award they receive based on that percentage. Avoiding a loss of compensation because of an accusation of comparative fault is just one of many reasons to consider working with a skilled attorney who has experience with this specific type of claim.
Recovering Damages in Seattle
Even though people involved in Seattle rear-end car crashes generally have the rear of their own vehicle between them and the direct force of the impact, these incidents still can and do lead to serious injuries with debilitating effects. Whiplash—the colloquial word for ligament strains and sprains in the neck caused by the head snapping forwards or backwards after a sudden impact—is particularly common in rear-end collisions.
Guidance from a knowledgeable legal representative could make a difference in both identifying and demanding appropriate restitution for crash-related injuries. It may be possible to recover not just for objective financial losses like medical bills and car repair costs, but also non-economic forms of physical pain and emotional suffering.
Learn More About Rear-End Car Accident Claims from a Seattle Attorney
While car accidents are the most common source of personal injuries for most Washington residents, that unfortunately does not mean they make for simple personal injury claims. If you got hurt because someone else rear-ended you, you may have an especially challenging time proving them legally at fault for your ensuing injuries and losses unless you seek help from dedicated legal counsel.
A capable lawyer could be essential to getting a good result from your lawsuit or settlement demand after a rear-end car accident in Seattle. Call today to learn more.