Even a relatively straightforward accident involving just one or two vehicles can result in a complicated and stressful legal battle. When multiple vehicles are involved, however, receiving a fair amount of compensation often feels completely impossible when taking on the well funded insurance company. If you or a loved one has recently been involved in a multi-car collision, then it is time to contact an experienced Rhode Island personal injury attorney. Without a RI car accident lawyer by your side, you could find yourself struggling with mounting expenses and nowhere to turn for help.
Common Multi-Car Accidents
According to the Department of Transportation, over six percent of all accidents within the United States involve at least three automobiles. These collisions often take place when multiple cars are driving too close to one another and cannot react to an accident in front of them. They might also take place when one or more drivers are not paying attention to road conditions such as wet streets or an object on the freeway. Due to the complexity of these accidents, it can be quite difficult to determine which party is at fault.
Determining Liability for a multi-car crash in RI
Every driver should take some time to familiarize themselves with the laws in their own state. In most cases, the driver who is at the rear of the accident is at fault. Pursuant to the common law of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations “[w]hen a case includes a claim or defense resulting from a rear-end collision between vehicles, a prima facie case of negligence against the driver of the car in the rear is established * * *.” Maglioli v. J.P. Noonan Transportation, Inc., 869 A.2d 71, 75 (R.I. 2005). Source
They might take their eyes off of the road for just a moment only to look up as they hit the car in front of them. That car is then pushed forward into the next car. This chain reaction can easily result in hundreds of thousands of dollars in damage and medical bills as well as pain and suffering. The responsibility can also be split across two or more parties if it is determined that more than one driver was negligent. The jury in a Rhode Island Multi car accident will look at the respective comparative fault of each of the motorists involved in an accident to determine who is liable to compensate the injured victim. If the injured victim is more then 50 percent at fault for the crash then they are not precluded from receiving compensation for their injures.
negligence attributable to the person injured
RI is a pure comparative fault state meaning a person who is 99 percent at fault for a collision could still receive 1 percent of there damages from the tortfeasor. § 9-20-4 Comparative negligence. – In all actions hereafter brought for personal injuries, or where personal injuries have resulted in death, or for injury to property, the fact that the person injured, or the owner of the property or person having control over the property, may not have been in the exercise of due care shall not bar a recovery, but damages shall be diminished by the finder of fact in proportion to the amount of negligence attributable to the person injured, or the owner of the property or the person having control over the property. § 9-20-4 Comparative negligence. More info about multi car accident in RI
Finding Legal Help for a multi-car accident
These complex legal situations should never be taken lightly, and drivers should never attempt to take on insurance companies and attorneys alone. Even if you are only partially at fault, your current insurance policy might only cover a fraction of what is owed. As for the victims, it is vital that you receive enough compensation to help you cover vehicle repairs, medical bills, and lost wages. Unfortunately, many insurance providers will attempt to pay out as little as possible in order to cut their losses. With our experienced legal team by your side, you can rest assured that we are doing everything in our power to help you get past these complex situations and move on with your life.
Legal Notice per Rules of Professional Responsibility: The Rhode Island Supreme Court licenses all lawyers and attorneys in the general practice of law, but does not license or certify any lawyer / attorney as an expert or specialist in any field of practice. While this firm maintains joint responsibility, most cases of this type are referred to other attorneys for principle responsibility.