What is a Staged Car Accident?

Staged car accidents are collisions that one or more parties carefully set up with the goal being to walk away with an easy payday. Although the scammers are responsible for the crash, they quickly blame the innocent driver and have witnesses ready to conveniently appear and tell the police what they “saw.”

Suddenly the innocent driver is left paying their deductible and any related accident expenses while the scammers are filing a claim against their insurance company for thousands of dollars. Fake injury claims can be very lucrative, and as a result, staged car accidents are a huge problem in Nevada and throughout the country.

What is a Staged Car Accident?

Common Types of Staged Car Accidents

There are several types of staged car accidents that are more common than others. Those include the following:

The Swoop and Squat

Also called a forced rear-ending scam, where the scammer will be driving next to you before abruptly swooping in front of you and slamming on the brakes. If you are unable to stop in time, you will crash into the back of their vehicle. This scam often works because, in most circumstances, the trailing vehicle is at fault in rear-end collisions.

The Drive Down

When a driver who has the right of way waves you ahead and when you take advantage of the seemingly nice offer and proceed, the scammer slams into your vehicle on purpose. Then, when the police arrive, the scammer denies that they waved at you to go first, blaming you for failing to yield the right of way and causing the collision.

The Sideswipe

This type of accident occurs when a scammer purposefully sideswipes your vehicle if you accidentally stray into another lane. This will typically happen at an intersection with two turn lanes, especially if you are turning from the inner lane. As a result, it will likely lead to an insurance claim against you.

The T-Bone Accident

When at an intersection or four-way stop, the scammer will wait until you take your turn and will quickly pull forward at the same time to t-bone your vehicle. They will also have witnesses planted to appear and tell the police that you were the one who ran the red light or stop sign.

How to Avoid Becoming the Victim of a Staged Car Accident

Here are some ways to avoid becoming the victim of a car accident scam:

  • Know the warning signs of a staged car accident, such as the at-fault driver lying about the cause of the collision or the severity of their injuries, phony witnesses, tow trucks suddenly appearing without being called, unsolicited advice from random people about where to go for medical care or recommendations on an attorney.
  • Be skeptical of any third-party witnesses who appear on the scene and back the other driver’s story.
  • Don’t accept referrals to tow-truck drivers, doctors, or attorneys.
  • Keep a safe following distance and never tailgate, so you have time to react to unexpected circumstances.
  • Seek video surveillance footage of the accident, if possible, from nearby businesses, homes, or government entities.
  • Document the accident scene thoroughly by taking photos, videos, and getting contact information for any witnesses.
  • Share your suspicions with law enforcement and the insurance company.
  • Consider installing a dash camera to use when you drive.

Fighting a staged car accident on your own can be challenging. However, a Las Vegas car accident attorney can help ensure liability falls on the appropriate party, and that you recover the compensation you deserve.