General Question

_Whitetigress's avatar

Who is at fault in this car accident?

Asked by _Whitetigress (4372points) August 7th, 2012

My wife in the right lane and other party in the left lane turns right into my wifes bumper, in an attempt to go from the left lane into the right lane into a right turn on a different road.

Wife drove straight the whole time, speed limit and the whole enchilada. Back left door and bumper were hit, bumper flew off.

Feel free to ask questions.

Note no one injured Phew!

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15 Answers

Shippy's avatar

Oh my! all those rights, here we drive on the left so I’m confused.

Judi's avatar

Usually the person making the lane change has the responsibility to make sure the lane is clear before entering it.

XOIIO's avatar

They are since they turned into you.

At least in Canada that’s how it is.

ZEPHYRA's avatar

Seems he was to blame! Luckily they are okay.

flutherother's avatar

It’s the other parties fault. It seems they were in the wrong lane.

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Pied_Pfeffer's avatar

It sure sounds like the other driver was at fault.
Q#1: Is the other driver disputing it?
Q#2: Were there any witnesses?
Q#3: Were the police called? If so, was anyone ticketed? If so, who was it?

Sunny2's avatar

I agree the driver on the left was at fault. Probably failed to look in his side mirror to see if anyone was in the right lane, or the mirror was not adjusted properly so he could see the right lane completely. Or he was on the phone or texting or . . . or. . . or
He was WRONG!

zenvelo's avatar

Also, they hit your rear which is default wrong in California.

JLeslie's avatar

Didn’t they call the police? I would think the cop would have cited the other driver for changing lanes when it was’t clear. Seems like the other driver must have really been distracted to hit your wifes back side of the car? It’s not like the her car was in the other driver’s blind spot. Was it at high speeds? Did they trade ID and insurance information? Do you live in a no fault state?

gailcalled's avatar

Your wife clearly had the right-of-way according to all the laws of rules-of-the-road. Was there any debate over that issue, no-fault state or not?

_Whitetigress's avatar

Thanks all, I’ll try and update this when the adjuster finalizes the situation tomorrow, if not sooner. The reason I asked is because we are in California and no police was called in to file the report (my wife seems to think they would only respond to ‘major’ accidents, with that being said, isn’t it good practice to have the accident in the police report for assurance? no matter how big or small the accident is?). However the other party seems to have no idea how insurance and car accidents work, she offered my wife to pay half the damages on the bumper, which totaled out to 600$ I find that offer pretty hilarious, that doesn’t even include the side back door and from in between the door to the bumper.

AngryWhiteMale's avatar

I teach traffic school in California, when I’m not at my day job. While I’m not a complete expert, or an official authority, here’s my opinion. From your description of what happened, the other driver is at fault. As for the police, you are only required to report the accident to the CHP/police if someone is injured or killed. However, if there’s anything other than a slight ding, getting a police report will help with insurance.

Also, if there is any property damage over $750, you must file an SR-1 form with the DMV within ten days (an SR-1 is also required if there’s any injury or death involved). Even though insurance companies may do the paperwork, ultimately it is your responsibility to file it. You can have your license suspended for up to a year if you don’t file the SR-1. You say the bumper damages are $600; if that’s the only damage, no SR-1 required. But if there’s additional damage, make sure it’s filed ASAP.

It’s now after the fact, but regardless of whether the police come or not, taking pictures of the accident scene/damage is strongly advised. If you don’t have a camera, make a sketch on paper. It’ll help when you report the accident to insurance.

Good luck with filing the claim!

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_Whitetigress's avatar

My wife is indeed not at fault as pretty much everyone here claimed. She is fully covered :D Thanks all for your input!

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