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Accidents, Expenses, and Your Legal Rights
Auto Accident
Automobile accidents can cause much more than damage to your car, and one of the greatest stressors an individual may experience following an accident is determining who is "At Fault" an how that determination impacts everything from insurance rates and financial liability, to points on your driving record and court proceedings.

Briefly, in the United States, most individual states follow either a "Fault" or a "No-Fault" system. In states with a fault system, like Ohio, the person who is determined to be "At Fault" of causing the accident, is responsible for all costs associated with making the other party/individual in the accident "whole" again. Typically these costs and liabilities consist of actual damages (to the car, other personal property affected, and/or to any individual(s) also involved in the accident) and may also include other costs associated with compensating the "Not at Fault" party for lost wages, pain and suffering, or any additional "damage" he or she may have suffered as a result of the collision.

The "Not at Fault" party has the right to seek this compensation from the "At Fault" party and typically does so either through his insurance company or via a lawsuit against the "At-Fault" driver in court. Many times, both options are pursued in tandem with the non-fault party contacting his own insurance company to notify them of the accident, and to seek their assistance in obtaining all compensation due from the at-fault driver.

Once the insurance company has been notified, it will contact the at-fault driver's insurance company, attempt to settle the claim made by the non-fault party, and if not successful in negotiating terms directly outside of court, will pursue a lawsuit to compel the at-fault party to seriously consider whether it is better to settle quickly outside of court, or to proceed to a trial to determine the extent of the at-fault party's overall obligation.



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