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Accident

What to Do If You are In a Car Accident During a Test Drive

What to Do If You are In a Car Accident During a Test Drive

By | Accident, Car Accidents | No Comments

If you have ever purchased a car, then you know how important it is to take it for a test drive before you make your decision to buy it. The test drive is an exciting step in the process of buying a car. While accidents occurring during a test drive don’t happen very often, if one does happen, there are some questions that are raised that are different from those asked about normal car accidents. Here are some of the questions that arise when there is an accident during a test drive, and the answers to them.

Who Is Responsible for the Car Crash?

Like any car accident, in an accident with a car that is being test driven, the party whose negligence or carelessness caused the accident will be considered responsible for the damages that result. If you committed a traffic violation, were negligent, reckless, or distracted while test driving a vehicle, then you may be found to be liable for the accident.

There are no special rules designated for accidents that occur during a test drive in determining liability. It’s expected that you familiarize yourself with any special nuances (the car’s features and sight lines) before you begin driving it; and that you use proper caution as you develop a level of comfort driving the car (for example, steering, braking, accelerations, etc.).  

If you are involved in a test drive car accident, make sure that you take the same steps you would after any type of car wreck. Record the names and information of all involved drivers, passengers, and witnesses; take pictures of the cars involved and the scene of the accident; report the accident to your insurance company and the police; and, most importantly, call an experienced car accident attorney to ensure that your rights are protected.

Whose Insurance Will Cover the Accident?

Whose insurance will cover the accident will depend on who is found to be at fault. It is especially important to have a car accident lawyer advocating for you during this process, so that if you are not at fault, or if you are only partially at fault, that you do not get taken advantage of by the other insurance companies.

There are typically at least three insurance companies involved when there is an accident during a test drive: the dealership’s, yours, and the other driver’s (there may be one or more other drivers involved, each with their own insurance).

Car dealerships have to carry fleet insurance on all of the vehicles on their lot, and a test driver is usually covered under that policy. Usually, fleet coverage will cover all damages that result from an accident that happens during a test drive, regardless of whose fault the accident was. However, in serious accidents, or when the test driver or the driver of the other involved vehicle is clearly at fault, the dealership may seek to have damages paid in a third-party claim.

If you are found to be at fault for the accident, and the dealership or other involved parties decide to file a claim against you, it will be your insurance company that has to pay for damages, up to the limits of your liability coverage.

If the other driver that is involved in the accident is found to be responsible, then the car dealership will not be able to hold you liable for any damages, instead, they will have to make a claim against the other driver’s insurance. You too can make a claim against the other driver’s insurance if you sustain injuries in the accident.

Seek Help Right Away for a Test Drive Accident

It is easy to get lost in all the red tape that accompanies car accidents. If you or a loved one is injured in an accident during a test drive, let Boca Raton car accident lawyer, Joe Osborne, help you navigate all the complexities involved in making a claim. Contact the Florida law firm of Osborne & Associates at (561) 293-2600, for an evaluation of your car accident and help with how to proceed.

How Does Comparative Negligence Affect My Slip and Fall Case?

How Does Comparative Negligence Affect My Slip and Fall Case?

By | Accident, Slip and Fall Accident | No Comments

If you have suffered injuries as a result of a slip and fall accident in Florida, you may wonder if you have a personal injury case from which you can recover damages. Slip and fall cases, which are considered premises liability cases, involve negligence on the part of the property owner (or manager) where you fell. They assert that the owner or manager didn’t take the reasonable precautions to make the area safe for those passing through.

For example, there may have been a danger on the property, like a wet floor, and the owner or manager of the property didn’t clean it up or place a “wet floor” sign to warn about the danger. The failure to do one of those things may result in you falling and being injured.

The property owner’s failure to take reasonable precautions is considered negligence, and you may have a valid slip and fall claim. However, it’s possible that the property owner will argue that you had fault in the accident. If it is determined that you did have some fault in the accident, it’s referred to as comparative negligence.

Understanding Comparative Negligence in Slip and Fall Accidents

It is the responsibility of the defendant to establish comparative negligence. That means that the property owner must prove that you did not demonstrate reasonable care or that you behaved in a dangerous manner, and that your behavior was at least partially responsible for the injuries that you suffered.

How does this affect your slip and fall accident case? If the defendant is able to prove that comparative negligence exists, then your settlement or recovery in a trial may be much less than if the defendant was found completely responsible for your injuries.

How Do Defendants Establish Comparative Negligence in Slip and Fall Cases?

Typically, the property owner will attempt to prove that you were acting in an irresponsible manner or doing something that you shouldn’t have been doing to establish that you are partly responsible for the accident and your injuries.

Some of the common arguments that defendants in slip and fall accident cases will use to establish comparative negligence are:

You were not paying sufficient attention when your accident happened

You were somewhere on the property that you shouldn’t have been

You did not pay attention to warnings about the dangerous condition

You didn’t have appropriate footwear, or your footwear caused the accident

The dangerous condition was clearly visible

If Comparative Negligence is Proven, What Does It Mean for You?

If your slip and fall accident case goes to trial, the court has to determine who is responsible for the accident and how much responsibility they have. If it’s found that you and the defendant share responsibility, then your compensation will be adjusted based on the percentage of fault you are determined to have.

Get Help from a Slip and Fall Accident Lawyer

Defendants and their attorneys will commonly try to prove that the injured person was at fault in slip and fall cases. That is why it is important that you seek the help of a slip and fall accident attorney if you or a loved one is injured on someone else’s property.

Florida slip and fall lawyer, Joe Osborne, can help you with your case, and fight for you if comparative negligence is alleged against you. Contact him at (561) 293-2600, for an evaluation of your slip and fall case and help with how to proceed.