One of the most frequent concerns people have when considering a car crash claim is who had the right of way. This can be difficult to determine in many common Columbus traffic wreck cases, such as intersection and pedestrian-vehicle collisions.
In cases where the right of way is unclear, legal representation from an experienced attorney can be crucial in securing a positive outcome to a claim for damages. However, regardless of whether there was an established right of way in your Columbus car accident, the lawyers at O’Connor, Acciani & Levy can consult with you on pursuing recovery for your losses.
How Does Right of Way Impact a Civil Claim?
Ohio follows comparative negligence laws, which means that the court considers the fault of every party involved in a civil claim. In certain cases, such as traffic crashes involving intersections or crosswalks, right of way may be a greater factor in the comparative negligence analysis. For example, if a pedestrian is struck by a distracted driver, the fact that they were crossing in a non-designated area may make them partially liable for their ensuing injuries since they did not have right of way.
If an injured victim shares a degree of fault in a car crash, the compensation they are entitled to could be reduced by a proportional amount. Significantly, if they are found to be more than 50 percent at fault, then they are not allowed to seek recovery for damages at all. They can still seek a recovery for half of their damages if they are 50 percent at fault, but at 51 percent their recovery is barred. One of our knowledgeable attorneys can further explain comparative negligence laws and how they may be affected by right of way in a specific Columbus collision case.
Columbus Car Collisions with Established Right of Way
Certain types of traffic accidents are more clear-cut in determining right of way. For example, a plaintiff and their local attorney may have an easier time establishing fault in a rear-end case because the following driver is generally in violation of the assured clear distance statute in Ohio. However, pursuing a claim for these cases often still requires rigorous legal support to prove that a negligent party violated the established right of way in causing the Columbus road accident.
To build a case that demonstrates the plaintiff’s right of way, our skilled attorneys often gather various types of evidence regarding the car crash. Some examples include:
- 911 call audio
- Dashboard and body camera footage from the investigating police officer
- Security cameras from intersections or nearby businesses
- Traffic lighting sequences to determine who had the green or red light
- Physical evidence from the accident site, such as skid marks
Certain evidence needs to be collected and preserved right after a traffic wreck, so reach out to our firm as soon as possible to go over the facts and discuss the next steps to take. The insurance company for the other driver will often request a recorded statement right away, so it is important to contact a knowledgeable attorney before speaking to them.
Other Factors that Impact Liability in Traffic Crashes
Besides right of way, allocation of liability can also be influenced by several factors, such as the speed of the vehicles involved and any cellphone usage by the drivers. If a motorist had the opportunity to take evasive action and avoid the collision, this could also affect their degree of fault regardless of whether they had right of way.
Call an Attorney to Advise on Right of Way in Columbus Car Accidents
In any traffic collision case, it is recommended to reach out to nearby legal counsel for consultation. When a crash involves a disputed right of way, it is particularly important to speak with a seasoned attorney who can explain your rights and relevant laws, determine if you could be comparatively negligent, and advise on giving a recorded statement to an adverse insurance company.
If you believe you had the right of way in a Columbus car accident that left you injured, contact O’Connor, Acciani & Levy. Schedule your free consultation today.