Who’s at Fault for a Rear End Auto Accident?

Were you involved in a rear end accident and you hit the car from behind but still don’t think you’re at fault for the accident? Check out this video to learn who is at fault for a rear end accident.

Hey everyone my name is Barry Zlotowicz and I’m a personal injury attorney in Chicago, Illinois. Welcome to the LawFull Channel.

I get a lot of calls from people who were involved in a rear ender accident. And often they’ll say they rear ended someone but don’t feel that they were at fault for the accident.

This raises the question – can you rear end someone but not be at fault for the accident? In short, yes, it’s possible that just because you rear ended someone that you might not be at fault for the accident. But it’s going to be tough to prove

First, what’s the standard in a rear end accident – same as most personal injury cases – was the party that caused the accident negligent meaning did they breach their duty of care? Keep this in mind when trying to figure these cases out.

Now generally speaking, in more than 9 out of 10 cases if you rear end someone you’re going to be at fault. You can argue till your blue in the face with the police officer or with your insurance company about fault but if you hit someone from behind you’ve got a big burden to overcome to get out of fault.

Let’s take a look at a few circumstances where you might not be at fault where you rear ended someone:

The one situation I’ve seen the most and the one we’ve been most successful on in the past is where someone gets cut off and as a result rear ends someone. We had a motorcycle accident case a while back. Our client was going straight down the street and a car quickly pulled out of a gas station and our client on the bike rear ended the car. Fortunately there was a witness who saw the accident and stayed at the scene and told the police that our client got cut off. We were able to prevail in that case.

Here’s another situation where the car in the rear might not be at fault. I had another case that I was involved in and our client was sitting stationary at a stop light and the car in front of her decided to put her car in reverse and hit the front of our client’s car. In that case, our client was obviously not at fault for the accident.

Another situation I get calls on a lot – you’re driving down the street and the car in front of you slams on his brakes ‘for no reason.’ I hear this a lot. And I want to be honest, I personally have never taken a case on like this. The burden is too high. Normally, people don’t slam on their brakes for no reason. You may not have seen why they slammed their brakes but in most cases they had a reason……

Now if you do allege this, it’s going to be really important that there is a third party witness who can verify what you’re saying that there absolutely was no reason why the car in front of you hit their brakes… But I would bet that 99 out of 100x this is going to be a losing argument.

Ok, what about this fact pattern? You’re driving down the street and you get rear ended by a car behind you and then you rear end the car in front of you. Who’s at fault for that accident? Well remember what I said before, there has to be some negligence to hold a driver at fault. Now you might be negligent because you were following too close or you were speeding for example. But generally speaking, the car that started the chain of events, the car at the very back is going to be responsible for all the damage and injuries.

Thanks for checking out this video. If you were injured in an auto accident in Chicago and are looking for some help, reach out to me. And if you haven’t already please subscribe to our channel.

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