When Are You Liable for a Tailgating Car Accident?

Trusted Content

Legally reviewed by:

Erik Abrahamson, J.D. February 13, 2017

Accident Injury Lawyers Fighting for Victims of Tailgating Accidents Throughout the Tampa Area

If you have been injured in a tailgating accident, it is easy to assume that you must be at fault for your own injuries. If you were tailgating the vehicle in front of you, had you just left a little more space, maybe you could have avoided the accident. If you got rear-ended by a vehicle that was following you too closely, maybe you could have avoided the collision had you been prepared to pull onto the shoulder when you saw its headlights approaching in your rearview mirror.

While it is human nature to second-guess yourself after a car accident, it is important not to let thoughts about “what could have been” get in the way of making smart decisions. The financial costs of an accident can be devastating; and, even if you think you may have been to blame, it is still critical that you speak with an experienced car accident lawyer in Florida.

Here are three reasons why:

1. You Don’t Actually Know What Happened.

First and foremost, until you hire a law firm to investigate the accident, you won’t actually know what happened. While you may think that you could – and should – have avoided the collision, an investigation may reveal that the accident would have happened regardless of whether you were following too closely or had been carefully monitoring your rearview mirror. When it comes to legal liability, determining who was at fault often is not as straightforward as it seems. If you assume that you don’t have a claim, you will never know if you may have been entitled to just compensation.

2. Even if You Were Partially at Fault, You May Still Be Entitled to Compensation.

In Florida, accident victims benefit from a legal principle known as, “pure comparative fault.” What this means is that, even if you were partially at fault, you can still seek a partial financial recovery. While the laws in some states say that you must have been 50 percent or less at fault in order to have legal rights, in Florida you could be 90 percent at fault and still recover 10 percent of your losses. While this may not sound like much as a percentage, imagine if you claim is worth $100,000. What if it is worth $1,000,000?

3. The Insurance Companies Will Try to Convince You that You Are Right.

When you file an insurance claim, your adjuster’s goal – your adjuster’s job – is to make sure you receive as little compensation as possible. Adjusters work for the insurance companies, not for policyholders, and it is in the insurance companies’ best interests to let people think they are to blame for their own injuries. If you try to deal with your insurance company on your own, and if you say you think that you might have been at fault because you were tailgating, you can rest assured that your insurance adjuster will not try to change your mind.

Speak with a Tampa Car Accident Lawyer at Abrahamson & Uiterwyk

If you would like more information about how an accident attorney can help protect your rights after a tailgating car accident in Tampa, contact Abrahamson & Uiterwyk for a free and confidential consultation. To find out if you have a claim, call (800) 538-4878 or submit your case online today.