Liability when Involved in a Single Vehicle Accident
In many ways, single vehicle accidents are no different than crashes involving two or more vehicles. Although you did not hit a car, you probably still crashed into a tree, fire hydrant, or house. Some cars involved in single-vehicle crashes roll over after being forced off the road. Very few people walk away from a Vegas single vehicle accident without suffering some sort of injury, usually serious.
We can help. A Nevada single vehicle lawyer at Ladah Law can identify liability for the crash, which is critical for receiving compensation. Depending on who is at fault, you might receive full compensation for your injuries—or no compensation at all.
Analyzing the Cause of the Accident
The first question we ask clients is, “What happened?” Based on what they tell us, we can often pinpoint the cause of the accident. Some of the more common culprits include:
- A road defect. Something wrong with the road could cause a driver to lose control, leading to a single vehicle crash.
- A car defect. Something wrong with the car could also lead to a wreck. For example, brakes might fail, or defective tires could blow. Defects are often the fault of the manufacturer or a mechanic who did poor repair work.
- A property owner. Someone’s pet or even a child could have run into the road, forcing you to swerve. The parent or pet owner could be responsible for negligently causing you to get into a crash.
- Another driver. The fact that a motorist didn’t crash into you doesn’t mean they didn’t cause the accident. For example, a driver could cut you off, forcing you to take defensive action. Consequently, you could end up in a ditch trying to avoid a collision. But the driver who cut you off is the cause.
The injured motorist. Sometimes, our clients contributed to their crash. For example, they could have fallen asleep and drifted off the road. Or they could have been distracted and swerved onto the shoulder, where they flipped their car over. Their negligence is the main reason they got into a crash.
Under Nevada law, there might be multiple causes for any accident. This means liability for the wreck could be split between many different parties. Even if you are partially at fault, you can still seek compensation unless you are more than 50% to blame for your wreck.
As experienced Las Vegas car accident lawyers, we are always looking for evidence to prove what happened. Your memories are a good starting point, but we usually need other evidence. An insurance adjuster might discount your testimony as self-serving. If we can back up your story, then we have a much stronger claim.
We also investigate a crash to find:
- Eyewitness testimony. Someone might have seen a driver swerve in your lane, which caused you to take defensive action, or they saw a dog run into the road. These eyewitnesses could be other drivers on the road or even passengers in your vehicle.
- Dashcam footage. More and more cars have dash cams which continuously record as the car is in motion. This footage can show if a driver swerved in front of you or a defect caused you to lose control.
- Photographs. Any photo of a road defect or debris can help establish its existence. You definitely want a picture of a pothole or trash in the road, because the government might quickly fix the road.
- Surveillance video. Casinos and other businesses in Vegas usually have surveillance video which can capture accidents right outside the business. We can search for this footage.
After a single vehicle accident, take the same steps you would if you were involved in a two-car wreck. Call the police and take photographs of anything that seems relevant. A driver who almost hits you but doesn’t probably won’t stop. So try to get as much information as you can, such as the make and model of the car, its color, and any description of the driver. You can share this information with the police, who should search for the driver who almost hit you.
Myths about Single Vehicle Accidents
Too much inaccurate information is floating around the internet, so we need to set the record straight:
- Myth #1: If a driver doesn’t hit you, they aren’t liable. This is simply false. A driver is liable if they caused you to crash due to negligent driving. Someone who drifts into your lane or cuts you off is every bit as liable as a driver who rams into your rear fender.
- Myth #2: The driver in a single vehicle accident is always at fault. This is again wrong. We need to review the facts. A road defect or a defective vehicle part could have caused the crash. Many victims of single-vehicle accidents were driving safely at the time of the accident.
- Myth #3: The insurance companies will blame the driver for a single vehicle accident. This is partially true. They might be suspicious and require evidence that something else is to blame. That’s where a seasoned lawyer is a big help.
- Myth #4: You can’t receive compensation for a single-vehicle accident. Wrong! We can seek compensation for our clients if someone else is partially responsible for your crash.
To get the facts, please schedule a consultation with a Las Vegas car accident attorney to review your case.
Pursuing Compensation for a Single Vehicle Accident
- Once we establish liability, our legal team can go about obtaining compensation. Depending on the facts, the following are your primary options:
- Claims against the driver who forced you off the road. If you can identify this person, you can bring a claim against them.
- Tort claims against the government. If a road defect led to your crash, you can sue the government for negligence.
- Uninsured motorist (UM) claims. If you can’t identify the driver who caused your crash, you can still file a UM insurance claim. Nevada drivers should have been offered an uninsured/underinsured motorist policy, although you might have declined to pick it up.
- Tort claims against a manufacturer or mechanic. You could bring a product liability lawsuit for any defective vehicle part that led to a crash. Or you could sue a faulty mechanic for negligence.
- Homeowner’s insurance claim. If someone’s dog or child ran into the street, you might be able to bring a claim against their home insurance policy.
- Collision insurance claims. If you have collision insurance, you could get your car repaired by making a claim. This is no-fault insurance, so it doesn’t really matter who is liable for the wreck.
- Medical payments claims. Medpay coverage is optional in Nevada. But if you have it, then you can use it to pay for medical care. Med pay is no-fault.
We excel at searching for all available means of compensation so that an accident does not cause unnecessary financial stress. Never assume you have no legal right to compensation.
Speak with a Las Vegas Car Accident Attorney to Review
Single vehicle accidents are not as straightforward as other crashes. But that does not mean that victims cannot receive compensation when the facts warrant it.
At Ladah Law, our team has helped many people seek money for medical care, lost income, and other losses following a single vehicle crash. We pride ourselves on building these cases from the ground up and negotiating a settlement to hold any at-fault party accountable. To learn more, give us a call at (702) 252-0055 to schedule a free consultation, or send us an online message.