When a rear-end car crash occurs, it is usually clear that the driver in the back is at fault. While this may change in cases with more complex facts, these accidents are usually caused by tailgating, distracted driving, or even drunk driving. If you or a loved one was injured in a rear-end collision, you may be considering using your car insurance to cover your damages and injuries, but that might not be your best option.
Filing a lawsuit for your car accident injuries may entitle you to more damages than you would receive through your auto insurance. It is important to discuss your options with an experienced attorney and to discuss what your case might be worth before you accept any settlements. For a free consultation on your car accident injuries, contact Springdale rear-end collision lawyer Ken Kieklak today at (479) 316-0438.
Proving Fault in a Rear-End Crash in Arkansas
Car accidents may be true “accidents” in that no one caused the crash on purpose. However, in most cases, one driver’s lack of care or skill is the true cause of the accident. Because of this, car accident cases are usually filed as lawsuits for “negligence.” This means that you, as the injured party, work to prove that the other driver failed to use the proper care or skill that the situation required, which caused your injuries. For a car accident, this means showing that the other driver’s dangerous speeding, running a red light, driving drunk, or other dangerous decision caused the crash.
With a rear-end collision, there are a number of potential causes for the accident. In most rear-end collisions, the driver to the rear is at-fault. Often, these accidents are caused because the rear driver:
- Was following too closely,
- Was driving too fast to stop before hitting the car in front,
- Was distracted and failed to stop in time, or
- Had their reaction time delayed by drugs, alcohol, or exhaustion.
In any of these situations, it is apparent that the driver in the rear did something wrong, or else they would have stopped before causing the accident. This helps prove your case against them whether you file through insurance or in a court of law.
There are times where the driver in front may share fault in causing the accident, as well. For instance, stopping short, “brake-checking” a tailgating driver, or reversing into the rear driver could make the front driver partly at-fault for the crash. When both parties share in the blame for an accident, you can still recover compensation as long as you are less than 50% responsible. However, your damages may be reduced according to your percentage of fault.
Should I Sue or Use Auto Insurance for a Rear-End Accident in AR?
Arkansas’ auto insurance rules allow injured parties to take their case to court instead of using the auto insurance if they want. However, some insurance policies have “add-ons” for “no-fault” insurance. This gives your policy a level of “personal injury protection” (PIP) coverage which pays for your injuries regardless of who is at fault for the crash. It is important to check your policy to see if you have this feature or not.
Even though auto insurance may be available in your case, you may still want to file your injury case in court to maximize your damages. Arkansas’ auto insurance laws require every driver to carry a car insurance policy that covers at least $25,000 of injury per person and $50,000 per accident. This coverage is often geared toward covering medical expenses and lost wages for car accident victims, but there is no guarantee that the policy will cover these amounts in full.
By filing your car accident claim as a lawsuit, you could be entitled to additional damages. Unlike insurance payouts, a personal injury lawsuit has the ability to fully compensate any financial or physical harms you suffer because of the car crash. That can include fully covering medical costs like surgeries, X-rays, hospital stays, and even crutches. It can also cover lost wages you missed while recovering and lost wages you will miss if you cannot return to work.
One of the most important things that a car accident lawsuit can do that insurance cannot is cover pain and suffering damages. These damages are paid to cover physical and mental suffering after an injury. While these damages are harder to calculate because you cannot put a price tag on physical injuries, they can still be very high. There is no limitation on these damages under Arkansas law, meaning this could be one of the largest parts of your injury lawsuit’s damages.
Call for a Free Consultation with Our Springdale Car Accident Lawyer for Rear-End Collisions
Ken Kieklak, Attorney at Law, represents the victims of car accident lawsuits. If you or a loved one suffered a rear-end crash, talk to an attorney about your case today. You could suffer serious injuries, such as whiplash, back injuries, head injuries, and other trauma that could require substantial medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering damages. For a free consultation, contact Springdale rear-end car accident lawyer Ken Kieklak today at (479) 316-0438.