The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) even reports that almost half of all two-vehicle crashes between 2012 and 2014 are due to a rear-end collision. Rear-end collisions usually occur at low speeds, but even so, they can result in serious injuries, significant damage to the vehicles, and even death. If you or your loved one was in a rear-end collision caused by another driver in Durham, North Carolina, you could be able to receive compensation for your losses.
At Ben Crump Law, PLLC, our Durham rear-end collisions lawyer is here to help you. Our team can take on your case so you can move forward from your accident, knowing that we will do everything we can to recover full and fair compensation for you. Call us at (800) 598-7557 for a free, no-obligation consultation.
Rear-End Collisions and North Carolina’s Contributory Negligence System
The state of North Carolina is a “fault” state, which means that the driver who caused the accident is legally responsible for providing compensation for the damages caused by the accident. However, North Carolina is also one of only a few states in the U.S. that follows a contributory negligence rule. According to this rule, if you share any fault at all for the car accident — if you “contributed” to the accident — then you are not eligible to receive any damages from the other party, even if it was 99% their fault.
Because of this contributory negligence system, it is crucial to show that a rear-end collision was totally the fault of the other driver if you hope to recover compensation for the injuries and other losses you suffered. It is a good idea to consult a Durham rear-end collisions lawyer for help.
A rear-end collision occurs when the front of one vehicle strikes the back of another vehicle. In the majority of cases, the person in the rear is the one at fault for the accident. These accidents occur most often at traffic lights or stop signs when a driver is distracted or driving too fast and fails to brake in time to stop before hitting the vehicle in front of them.
However, the driver in the front can also share some of the blame or be responsible for the accident. For instance, if they braked suddenly, had broken tail lights, or indicated they were going to turn and continued straight instead, the rear-end collision could be their fault.
For a free legal consultation with a rear-end collisions lawyer serving Durham, call 800-959-1444
Legal Options for Compensation After a Rear-End Collision in Durham
After you are in a rear-end collision or another type of car accident in Durham, North Carolina, you have two main options for seeking compensation for the damages done to your person and your vehicle:
- Make an insurance claim. To begin seeking compensation for your rear-end collision, you could file a claim either with the other driver’s car insurance provider or with your own car insurance provider, who will reach out to the other company for a subrogation claim. An insurance claims adjuster will investigate the facts of your case before offering you a settlement. An attorney can represent your interests and communicate and negotiate with insurance companies for you, so you know that you are getting the best deal possible.
- Pursue a civil lawsuit. When you cannot recover the compensation you deserve through car insurance, you can pursue damages through a lawsuit instead. You have the legal right to file a personal injury lawsuit for your losses, and you can also file a wrongful death lawsuit if your loved one died in the accident.
Whether you only go through the car insurance system or you choose to pursue a lawsuit, North Carolina’s contributory negligence law applies. You will need to prove either to the insurance companies or to the court that you were not at fault for the accident. Evidence that is helpful in proving the other driver’s fault includes:
- The police report for the accident
- Video footage of the accident
- Photos of the scene of the accident and the vehicle damages
- Information from the cars’ electronic memories, such as the speed they were traveling when impact occurred
To obtain financial compensation, you will also need to show that you suffered harm because of the accident, such as vehicle damage and maintenance records and your medical records.
The team at Ben Crump Law, PLLC can help you by gathering all this evidence for you and presenting it to insurance claims adjusters or in a lawsuit. Our Durham rear-end collisions lawyer can manage all the aspects of your case, so you only have to focus on recovering from the accident. Contact our team today for a no-obligation consultation.
Durham Rear-End Collisions Lawyer Near Me 800-959-1444
North Carolina’s Statute of Limitations May Affect Your Case
While insurance claims typically need to be filed as soon as possible after a car accident, you do have a bit more time if you want to pursue a civil lawsuit for your rear-end collision. North Carolina’s statutes of limitations give you three years to pursue a personal injury lawsuit and two years to pursue a wrongful death lawsuit, according to North Carolina General Statutes (GS) §1-52 and GS §1-53.
This amount of time is helpful because you can complete all the medical treatment necessary for your injuries and have time to calculate every expense that the accident caused you. If you miss these deadlines, however, you can lose your right to recover compensation for the accident.
Recoverable Damages for a Rear-End Collision
The types of damages, or financial compensation, that you may be able to recover for a rear-end collision include both economic and non-economic losses. The damages that you may be eligible to receive include:
- Property damage costs, such as vehicle repair or replacement and other property damaged in the accident, such as your cell phone or jewelry
- Medical treatment costs, including doctor’s visits, hospital stays, therapy costs, and prescription costs for both the past and future
- Funeral expenses for your family member who died in the accident
- Loss of income and loss of future earning capacity
- Physical pain and suffering
- Emotional distress
The Durham rear-end collisions lawyer at Ben Crump Law, PLLC can help you identify and calculate all the damages that you could be eligible to receive. Our team works on contingency, so we never charge you any fees unless we can recover financial compensation for you. Contact us at (800) 598-7557 to get started.