Experiencing a head on collision can not only be frightening, but it can also lead to long-term physical injury or even death. When the front end of two vehicles are driving toward one another and collide, physical and emotional traumas may occur that can lead to medical expenses, lost wages, or other costs.
If you or someone you love has been the victim of a head on collision caused by another person’s negligence, our North Carolina personal injury lawyers can help.
The Doyle Law Offices, P.A. has all the information you need to understand the complexities of head on collision cases so you can prepare for your NC car accident claim, receive compensation for your losses, and begin your journey down the path of both physical and financial recovery.
What Causes a Head on Collision?
When two cars are driving toward one another and crash head-on, many serious injuries have the potential to occur. Even if the vehicles are moving at a relatively slow speed, since both cars are in movement before they collide, the injuries suffered can be catastrophic. If the cars both drive quickly, there is even more opportunity for life-long injuries and even fatalities to anyone involved in the accident.
It seems that if two cars were driving toward one another it might be easy to swerve, stop, and avoid the collision. However, more often than not, a head on collision happens so quickly that drivers do not have enough time to react and avoid the crash.
Our head on collision attorneys have experience working with clients whose front-colliding car accidents occurred as the result of a variety of causes.
Here are some of the most common causes of head on collision car accidents:
- Driving in the wrong direction
- Distracted driving
- Cell phone use while driving
- Speeding around turns or on winding roads
- Passing another vehicle improperly
- Failing to adjust to changes in weather or lack of visibility
- Reckless driving that does not adhere to traffic laws
Determining Who is at Fault in a Head on Collision
It’s an unfortunate reality that after you or your loved one experiences a head on collision, it is now your burden to prove the other driver was at fault in order to receive any kind of compensation for damages. With the overwhelming experience of the head on car accident, you are now tasked with dealing with the other driver’s insurance company and proving that you were the innocent party involved in the crash.
There are several ways to determine who is at fault in a head on collision, and each begins with the help of an experienced personal injury car accident lawyer who has handled cases similar to yours. Not only can your head on collision attorney help you in dealing with insurance companies, but they will also collect the necessary evidence related to your case and use that evidence to develop a strategy that puts the other driver at fault.
Types of Evidence from a Head on Collision
- Law enforcement's crash report
- Eyewitness testimony
- Video or images of the accident
- Toxicology reports
Legal Liability in a Head on Collision
“Legal liability” is the term used by insurance companies to determine the at-fault party responsible for the accident. If the fault is proven, this individual is legally liable for the accident and as a result, must pay damages to the injured person or their surviving loved ones in the case of wrongful death.
The ways for the plaintiff– or person filing the personal injury claim against the at-fault driver, to prove the fault is through the following:
- Duty of Care: the legal obligation of a driver is that they are alert, sober, and undistracted when behind the wheel. If the defendant was not operating under the duty of care for other drivers, they will be found legally liable for the head on collision.
- Negligence: when someone is not following the traffic laws by driving on the wrong side of the road, speeding, or using the wrong highway entrance or exit ramp, they are being negligent in their duty as a driver and should be liable for compensation.
- Cause: proving cause simply means that the injured person is able to link their physical injuries to the head on collision– in other words, the car accident is the cause for injuries sustained by the plaintiff.
NC Head on Collision Fault System
Each state handles the process of determining fault differently– with some states allowing for compensation as long as the plaintiff was less than 51% or less than 50% at fault and others looking at compensation allowance based on the overall percentage each party was at fault.
In the state of North Carolina, we are what is called a Pure Contributory Negligence state. This means that if you are found to share any fault whatsoever in the accident you cannot receive compensation for damages. Ways you can be found to share fault is through the argument that you did not swerve out of the way or that had you reacted faster to the at-fault car coming toward you the accident could have been avoided.
Securing the talents of an experienced personal injury attorney is vital to avoiding shared fault in your NC head on collision case that would otherwise put you at shared blame and eliminate any potential to receive damages for your accident claim.
Types of Damages in a Head on Collision
There are many important things to consider when filing a personal injury claim for you or your loved one’s head on collision. From knowing the statute of limitations on car accident claims in NC to understanding the types of damages you might receive, after experiencing a head on collision it is essential to assess the reasons for your injury claims.
- Property Damages: costs related to your vehicle as well as any other property that needs to be replaced or repaired or for the loss of sentimental items of value that cannot be replaced.
- Physical Injury Damages: medical treatments, ongoing therapy costs, medication, and medical equipment costs, lost wages, pain and suffering, and any other compensation needed to be recovered as a result of the accident and injuries accrued.
- Wrongful Death Damages: costs related to the wrongful death of a loved one, such as lost future wages, funeral and burial costs, emergency medical care, and more can be recovered for surviving family members.
Compensatory vs Punitive Damages
Compensatory damages refer to the types of the financial recovery that will allow the victim of the head on collision to be reimbursed financially for expenses related to their injuries and pain and suffering that resulted from the crash. Compensatory damages are meant to shift the financial burden of the head on collision to the at-fault party, absolving the injured plaintiff of financial responsibility.
In contrast, punitive damages refer to the defendant, or at-fault party, being punished for their recklessness and negligence. These damages are meant to deter the defendant from ever acting recklessly again.
Contact a Head on Collision Attorney Today!
It’s important that after a head on collision or other motor vehicle accident, you secure legal representation that will act with your or your loved one’s best interests in mind.
At The Doyle Law Offices, our experienced car accident lawyers are here to help guide you through every step of your personal injury case. Leave the responsibilities of contacting insurance companies, proving fault, collecting evidence, and developing a legal strategy to secure the compensation you deserve to the professionals.
As you continue to heal from your head on collision, our legal team will work tirelessly to get you the justice and compensation you need to move forward in your life.
Call us today at (919) 228-4487 or fill out the contact form below.