According to the Insurance Information Institute, roughly two million Americans are in a rear-end collision each year. These accidents are frustrating, as they are usually entirely avoidable. Even worse, they often result in nagging, persistent, and painful damage to the back, neck, and head. But, who’s liable in rear-end accidents

Determining Liability in Rear-End Accidents

A basic rule of the road is that a motor vehicle can stop safely should the traffic ahead of it stop. What this rule means is that if the driver of the car cannot stop in sufficient time to avoid an accident, they were likely not driving safely. 

In practically all instances, the driver who strikes another vehicle from behind in a rear-end accident is at fault for the crash and therefore liable for the damage they cause. In most cases, the driver likely was not paying close enough attention to the road, as well as other road users, and as a result, failed to brake in time to prevent the accident. 

When Is the Driver Who Hits the Car in Front Not at Fault?

While the driver of the car who struck the other vehicle from behind is usually at fault, this does not mean that there are not instances where the driver struck was liable for the crash. Cases where the lead driver bears some – or all – of the fault for a rear-end collision include:

  • Sudden reversing
  • Brake-checking, or slamming on one’s brakes with no valid reason
  • Failing to repair a malfunctioning brake light
  • Driving with a flat tire, even after the driver was aware of the issue

Obtaining Compensation After a Rear-End Accident

If you suffer injuries in a rear-end car crash, you may be able to claim compensation for damages you incur for time you miss from work due to these injuries, as well as any pain and suffering. The most common type of injury in rear-end crashes is whiplash. This type of neck injury is widespread in these types of accidents, and the result of the neck being jerked back suddenly. Whiplash can cause severe pain and immobility in the neck, shoulders, and back, and may not be initially present right after a crash.

Injured in a Rear-End Crash? Contact DeZao Law Today

While liability in rear-end collisions is straightforward, the damages these crashes cause can have severe and lasting impacts on those hurt. 

If you suffer injuries in a rear-end collision, seek expert legal guidance right away. Because of the difficulty in diagnosing and living with whiplash, make sure you speak with an experienced New Jersey personal injury attorney today at the Law Offices of James C. DeZao, P.A. Our firm is here to assist you with your case and help you claim the compensation you rightly deserve. If you are struck from behind and experience pain, tingling, numbness, or anything else which keeps you from work or enjoying life to it’s fullest, contact us today at (973) 358-6134 for a free consultation.