Every year, U.S. drivers cause thousands of injuries by backing into other vehicles. This usually happens when they leave parking spaces or driveways. If a motorist hits your car while moving in reverse, you’ll probably want to know who is legally at fault. The answer differs depending upon the specific circumstances.
Right of Way
It’s important to determine who had the right of way. If you were traveling on a street or a lane between spaces in a parking lot, you had it. The motorist backing out of a driveway or parking spot was probably at fault and should’ve entered traffic more cautiously.
Nevertheless, there are a few exceptions to this rule. You could bear responsibility for the accident if you ignored a sign instructing you to yield or stop. Likewise, you may be found at fault because you were breaking the speed limit or using an electronic device that distracted you from driving.
Were you also traveling in reverse when a vehicle backed into your car? If so, this will complicate the situation. Generally, you’re not to blame if you started backing before the other driver. When two autos in opposite parking spaces begin moving at the same time, both motorists may bear partial responsibility for the resulting collision.
If your vehicle was parked when the other car struck it, you’re probably not at fault. It helps if you were using a legitimate parking space and didn’t violate any parking rules. Motorists are usually held responsible when they strike stationary autos.
After a car backs into your vehicle, be sure to trade insurance and contact details with the other driver. Take pictures and report the accident to your insurer as well. If you need professional legal advice or assistance in determining fault, please contact our legal experts for a consultation.