Should You Ever Admit Fault After A Car Accident?

The Roth Firm

The Roth Firm

No one enjoys the inconvenience of being involved in a car accident.

Injuries and damages aside, having your day interrupted is inconvenient enough for most people.

Add in the fact that you will likely have to replace parts of your car or get a new car completely and take care of your injuries, and you have an ordeal that will probably last months.

Because you want to be free of the hassle that comes along with a car accident, you are likely to do and say whatever you have to so you can speed up the process.

The first thing many people want to do is admit guilt, especially if they think it's their fault, thinking it will speed up the process and allow them to get on with their life.

That doesn't always work, and what's worse is that the car accident might not have been your fault even though it seemed like it was.

But, since you already admitted guilt, you are on the hook for damages.

In the article below, we will discuss why you should never admit fault and what you should do instead.

Why You Shouldn't Admit Fault

You should never admit fault after a car accident even if it does seem glaringly obvious that it was your fault.

If you admit fault, you as well as your insurance company become legally responsible for paying for any damages that resulted from the car accident.

While the other driver and their insurance company might try to pressure you into admitting fault, you should always resist the urge to take responsibility for the accident.

The first thing you need to do after a car accident to be sure you don't jeopardize your ability to recover compensation for damages from the accident is to speak to a car accident lawyer.

What You Should Tell The Police

Don't even admit fault to the police offer that responds to the scene.

Even if the other driver blames you for the accident, you should only tell the officer what happened from your perspective.

If you admit fault, the officer will include that in his accident report that the insurance company will refer to when investigating claims.

That makes it almost impossible for you to recover any damages from the accident.

When you admit fault, you are placing yourself at risk for having a personal injury lawsuit filed against you, especially if the other driver uses the statement you made to the police.

Don't lie to the police, but never do or say anything to incriminate yourself.

Hire a car accident lawyer as soon as you can and let them do the talking.

What If The Other Driver Insists It's Your Fault?

If the other driver continues to blame you for the accident, let them.

They have to provide proof that your negligence caused the accident that resulted in damages.

Without the legally required proof, the other driver is just wasting their breath.

Without proof, there is no way for them to win their case and recover compensation from you.

While they continue to blame you, your lawyer will be working on your defense, and maybe even proving that the accident was caused by the other driver.

Who Determines Fault If Neither Driver Admits To It?

In most cases, insurance adjusters will determine fault when a driver files a claim.

So, if another driver were to file a claim against you, adjusters from your insurance company as well as the other driver's insurance company will investigate the accident.

After the investigations, the adjusters will determine which party is at fault for the accident.

Sometimes police investigators will determine fault at the scene of the accident, especially if the crash involves multiple victims with serious or fatal injuries.

The investigators will examine the actions of every party involved to determine what happened and who was at fault.

The investigators often uncover factors that you were not aware of at the time of the accident that will prove you were not at fault for the crash.

What Do The Insurance Adjusters Investigate?

The insurance adjusters will review a variety of information during their investigations.

They look over statements the drivers made to the police and to each other.

This is why it is very important to never admit fault to anyone.

Adjusters will also review statements from eyewitnesses, the police report, and any citations that were written after the accident.

What Should You Tell The Adjusters?

The first thing you should do is avoid talking to the adjusters at all.

If you have to speak to them though, only tell them what you told the police officer that responded to your crash, and nothing else.

Having a lawyer to speak on your behalf will help a lot in situations like these.

Not only can your lawyer answer questions posed by the investigators, but they can do their own investigation work and collect evidence to prove that you were not at fault for the accident.

Can You File A Claim If You Were Injured?

If you file a claim against the other driver, keep in mind that the claims adjuster for the other driver's insurance company will try to devalue your claim.

Using an admission of guilt is the easiest way for an insurance adjuster to devalue a claim or deny it altogether.

Talking to your car accident lawyer before you file a claim will ensure that you are completely prepared to do so.

Your lawyer will file the claim on your behalf and negotiate a settlement with the insurance company.

What If You Were Accused Of Being Partially Responsible?

Sometimes multiple people are responsible for the same accident.

If an insurance adjuster assigns fault to you, you could receive a reduced settlement amount in the insurer applies the comparative negligence doctrine to your case.

This legal doctrine reduces your compensation based on your percentage of fault for the accident.

Let's say your damages totaled $10,000, but you were declared 40% responsible for the accident.

That means you would only receive a settlement of $6,000.

Contact A Car Accident Lawyer Today

Most people want to do what's right and put the car accident they were involved in behind them.

Sometimes you might think the right thing to do is to admit fault and get on with your life.

However, you should never admit fault after an accident, no matter what the situation is.

Even if it seems you were responsible for the accident, there might be things you are unaware of that would put the blame squarely on the other driver.

Say as little as possible after the accident, and contact a car accident attorney as soon as you can.


DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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