In car accidents involving multiple vehicles, it can be challenging to determine who is responsible. As a result, the steps you take after are critical, both to your health and your potential claim for compensation.
- Try to remain calm. Check if anyone is injured and move yourself to safety or stay in your vehicle.
- Call 911 or report the collision to law enforcement. If you or anyone else requires emergency transportation to a hospital, call 911. On the other hand, if injuries seem minor, still report the collision to the police. An officer will respond and fill out an accident report. This report will play a vital role in proving liability. Their report will include how they believe the accident occurred and which parties they believe were at fault.
- Gather information. Ask for the names, contact information, and insurance details of everyone involved. If there are any witnesses, ask how you can contact them as well. Eyewitnesses can have a significant bearing on how an insurance provider decides fault.
- Don’t discuss fault. Carefully interact with the other parties involved and refrain from discussing who was at fault. You may end up accidentally saying something that can be used against you when you go to file an insurance claim.
- Take pictures and/or videos. Photos and videos of the accident scene, the damage to the vehicles, their positions, and your injuries can be extremely beneficial. Along with witness accounts, photos, and video can help you prove your version of how the multi-car accident occurred.
- Seek medical care. If you were not taken to the hospital, see a doctor as soon as possible. There must be medical records linking your injuries to the accident for you to obtain compensation, and severe injuries can have delayed symptoms.
Speak to a Las Vegas auto accident attorney as soon as you can. Having a trusted legal advocate on your side can help ensure that the wrongful parties are held accountable. Multi-car accident cases are typically complex, and figuring out which insurance policies apply can be complicated. An attorney will immediately begin investigating to determine who is liable, gather the evidence you need to prove fault and negotiate a fair settlement to cover your losses entirely.
Who is At Fault for a Multi-Car Accident?
Nevada courts follow a modified comparative negligence system when deciding fault for a car accident. Under this rule, each party involved in a multi-car accident is assigned a percentage of fault based on their degree of negligence in causing the crash. You can recover compensation as long as you are less than 50% responsible for the collision.
However, your compensation will be reduced according to your percentage of fault. If you are 51% or more at fault, you cannot hold another party responsible and must rely on your own auto insurance coverage or pay for your losses out-of-pocket. For example, suppose you are awarded $100,000 and found 30% responsible for the multi-car accident; you will receive 70% of your award or, in this example, $70,000. On the other hand, if you are 51% or more responsible, you will not receive any compensation.