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Who Pays in a Three-Car Accident?

By Butler Prather LLP on February 16, 2023

In many cases, accidents involve only two vehicles, but that is not always how these incidents play out. There are times when a crash can involve three vehicles, and this can complicate the process of recovering compensation. Specifically, determining liability becomes more challenging when another vehicle is added to the equation. Here, we want to discuss who could be on the line to pay compensation after an accident involving three vehicles.

Who Pays in a Three-Car Accident?

Determining Liability in a Three-Car Accident

Determining liability after a three-car collision in the state of Georgia can be challenging, but it is a crucial step in the process of victims recovering compensation. 

After a collision occurs, law enforcement officials will typically come to the same to conduct a preliminary investigation. They will fill out an accident report, and it is not uncommon for the police officers to write down who they think caused the accident. If the officers believe that there was shared liability, they may notate this. However, the police report should not be the “end all be all” when it comes to these claims. Law enforcement officials do not always get liability correct as they may not have the tools or time to fully investigate the incident right after it happens.

Other evidence may be used to help determine liability. This can include photographs taken at the scene, surveillance footage from cameras on nearby homes or businesses, dashcam surveillance footage, statements from eyewitnesses, mobile device data, and vehicle black box data.

For a shared liability claim, it may be necessary for an accident reconstruction expert to assist attorneys when working to determine exactly what happened.

Dealing With Shared Fault Implications

If it is determined that there is more than one driver at fault for the incident, then liability is considered shared. This shared liability will play a role in how much compensation each individual pays to any injury victim, and it could lower the total amount of compensation an injury victim receives if they are found to be partially responsible for causing their own injuries.

Georgia operates under a modified comparative negligence system. In this state, individuals who are 50% or more responsible for causing their own injuries will not be able to recover compensation for their losses. However, if a person is less than 50% responsible for causing their own injuries, they can recover compensation, but the amount they recover will be reduced depending on their percentage of default.

Modified comparative negligence means that compensation paid to an injury or property damage victim may come from multiple sources. The investigation will help determine what percentage of fault each driver shared, and then they will be responsible for paying that percentage of damages to an injury or property damage victim.

Working With an Atlanta Car Accident Lawyer

If you or somebody you care about has been injured in an accident caused by another driver, reach out to an attorney immediately. If there are any allegations of shared fault, or if there is more than one driver involved who could hold liability, it is important to have an Atlanta car accident attorney investigate every aspect of the claim to help determine who should pay what proportion of compensation to an injury or property damage victim. It is almost a certainty that insurance carriers will push back from having to pay fair compensation, particularly when there are multiple parties at fault.

Posted in: Car Accidents

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