Injured in a car accident? Was the other driver distracted when the collision occurred? According to the laws of New York and general common law, a distracted driver is a negligent driver. Victims may be entitled to seek compensation for any losses experienced in a crash with a negligent driver.
When it comes to auto accidents, fault comes in a variety of forms. According to common law, there are actually four different types of fault. These are:
- Intentional: A driver meant to commit a dangerous act or intended to harm another individual.
- Recklessness: This refers to the purposeful disregard for the safety of others.
- Strict liability: This refers to accidents caused due to hazardous activities or product defects. Fault does not matter in such cases.
- Negligence: A driver was simply careless in his or her actions.
As previously stated, distracted driving falls under the negligence category. Distracted drivers are deemed careless in their actions. These individuals make mistakes that are easily avoidable by paying attention to the road.
The issue with a case involving a distracted driver is in proving that he or she was indeed negligent. It is not always easy to establish that some level of distraction caused a car accident. Thankfully, proving negligence is not something that victims have to do on their own. Police investigations can help with this, as can witness statements and investigations conducted by legal counsel. Under the right circumstances and with assistance, car accident victims in New York can take the steps necessary to seek relief for their losses by filing the appropriate claims in civil court.
Source: FindLaw, “Fault and Liability for Motor Vehicle Accidents“, Accessed on Feb. 19, 2018