Prince William County Parking Lot Accident Lawyer

There are some ways in which parking lot accidents often differ from accidents in the street or on the highway. A lot of times, parking lot accidents involve one vehicle going in reverse and either hitting one of the cars going down the aisle or hitting a pedestrian who walks behind the car, so it is one of the few times where you see a car going in reverse being involved in an accident. Additionally, in parking lots, other vehicles travel at a much lower rate of speed than on the highway. Most vehicles, when in a parking lot, travel between 5 and 15 miles per hour and maybe even slower, so these accidents tend to occur at much lower speeds than other accidents.

There are also more pedestrians around a parking lot than walking across an intersection or any other roadway with cars involved, so a pedestrian accident is more likely in a parking lot as well. Considering these unique factors, it is good to work with a local Prince William County parking lot accident lawyer, who has experience with these sorts of cases, when bringing this type of claim.

Safe Parking Lot Driving

Safe driving rules apply a little differently in a parking lot because when someone is reversing their visibility is limited. Someone in reverse should travel much slower and should make sure that no one, either cars or pedestrians, are within their vicinity when they are reversing.

Insurance Company Response to Parking Lot Accidents

Insurance companies treat parking lot accidents the same as any other case. To get a settlement or a favorable settlement offer from the insurance company the injured party will have to prove that the other party is insured and was negligent. Regardless of the form of accident, as long as a parking lot accident attorney in Prince William County is able to prove that the other insured party was negligent and that the client was free from any negligent behavior, then the insurance company will treat them all equally. At this point it becomes a matter of what the damages are, including injuries sustained, medical expenses for those injuries, lost wages, and pain and suffering from active treatment..

As long as there is a plausible story as to how the accident happened and that plausible story includes liability entirely on the part of the insured driver and zero liability whatsoever on the part of the client, then the insurance company will view that in a way that is favorable to the client.

Contributory Negligence

The simple act of walking in a parking lot does not constitute contributory negligence by itself. Walking in a parking lot is a necessary action and insurance companies understand that people walking through the parking lot would not be contributory negligent if they were hit by a vehicle.

What may be contributory negligence is if someone walks between the cars in the parking lot, or if they see a car backing out and walk in front of it without looking. Not paying attention, or not looking, or darting out in front of a car that had began to back out, might be considered a form of contributory negligence. If a judge or a jury decides that one of those acts was considered contributory negligence, then they wouldn’t be able to recover for their injuries. However, whether or not an insurance company says that someone’s acts constitute contributory negligence is not the final word on the case. If the insurance company believes this and has a strong belief that the person is contributory negligent, they still might be willing to settle their case, but for only a percentage of the value.

If the value of a case, with all things considered, was equal to $50,000, but the individual was contributorily negligent, the insurance may be willing to settle the case for something less than $50,000, such as $20,000 or $10,000 or even $5,000. While the insurance company can’t decide one way or the other whether someone is contributory negligent, they can assess the risk of going to trial. However, if a judge or a jury finds someone contributory negligent, they would recover zero.

Benefits of a Prince William County Parking Lot Accident Attorney

A person in a parking lot accident should look for an attorney who handles exclusively or mostly automobile accident cases so that they are familiar with the process and they have reasonable expectations as to the value of the case, especially cases involving accidents in a parking lot. It is also best if they are familiar with the area that their case would be brought in.

It is good to have someone who practices law in the county where the lawsuit will be brought. It is advantageous to work with a Prince William County lawyer parking lot accident lawyer who is familiar with the local courts and the judges and the particulars of each judge and the courthouse. That lawyer can make sure a case goes as smoothly as possible and can give a reasonable expectation as to how a case will play out.