Car accidents can happen anywhere, any time. And they can also occur in any manner of strange ways. One unusual type of car crash is hitting a parked car. Even more unusual is hitting an illegally parked car.
Illegal parking and car crashes raise some interesting liability questions.
Illegal parking and Georgia’s Modified Comparative Negligence Laws
It’s pretty clear that if you hit a legally parked car, you are going to be liable for any damages caused. That is because the general rule applied in these situations is that the person who could have avoided the accident (i.e., you) should have done so. If a car is legally parked, you should have been able to avoid the accident.
What if the car is:
- Parked in a “No Parking” area
- Blocking a fire hydrant, or
- Not parked within the parking lines
Any of these (or other) illegal types of illegal parking can change the liability issue from clear-cut to complicated.
Deciding liability for a car crash of any kind is extremely important. The rule in Georgia when it comes to liability is that if you are found to be 50% “at-fault” for the car accident, you cannot recover for your injuries. If, however, you are found to be less than 50% at-fault, (i.e., 49% or less), then you can recover for your injuries—but the amount you can recover will be reduced by your percentage of fault.
How to decide who is at fault for an illegally parked car accident?
In an illegally parked car/accident scenario, then, the question becomes who was “at-fault”?
The answer can be:
- the driver of the illegally parked car
- the driver of the car that hit the illegally parked car, or
- both drivers.
How this question gets decided depends on the facts of each case.
Generally speaking, however, if the illegally parked car was causing a safety hazard (for example, parked on a highway) or could not be seen by other drivers, chances are good that the driver of the illegally parked car will have some level of liability.
If, however, the illegally parked car was not causing a safety hazard and was visible by other drivers despite being illegally parked, that driver may not end up having any liability for the accident.
Car accidents frequently raise difficult and complicated liability issues, which is why, if you or someone you know has been involved in a car crash, you should seek advice from an experienced personal injury attorney.
Personal Injury Attorneys in Cumming, Georgia.
The personal injury attorneys at the Law Offices of Mark Weinstein, P.C., are here to help you. We serve clients in Atlanta, and in several counties throughout Georgia, including: Clayton County, Cobb County, Dekalb County, Douglas County, Fulton County, and Paulding County, among others. To find out how we can help you, call us at: 770-888-7707. Or contact us here.