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  • Writer's pictureRobert Schuerger II

Who Is at Fault in a T-bone Car Accident in Indiana? | The Impact of State Laws on Liability!

When T-bone car accidents happen, most people are quick to blame the driver that T-bones another vehicle. However, it's much more complicated than that. 

If a vehicle strikes another car in a T-bone accident, the fault often lies with the party that fails to yield the right of way, and the victim is typically the one that had the right of way.

Navigating car accident claims after T-bone accidents can be challenging. In most cases, there is rarely any evidence at the scene of the incident when the injured victims decide to bring a civil action. It's important to always seek legal representation to help build a strong personal injury case and increase one's chances of recovering compensation.

Schuerger Shunnarah Trial Attorneys have decades of combined experience protecting the rights of injured victims and aggressively fighting for the compensation they deserve. They know how to determine fault for rear-end car accidents, multi-car accidents, among others and can guide the affected parties in Indianapolis, Indiana, on their legal options.

Who Is at Fault in a T-bone Car Accident at an Intersection in Indiana?

Who Is at Fault in a T-bone Car Accident at an Intersection in Indiana?

Driving through an intersection can be confusing. Most drivers are unaware of the right-of-way laws, which is why most T-bone accidents happen at intersections. 

Often, motorists make incorrect assumptions or misjudge others, causing them to move into oncoming traffic. This increases the risk of collisions.

There are many ways a T-bone collision can happen at an intersection, some of which include the following:

Left-turn Accidents

Left-turn T-bone accidents happen when the drivers are not paying attention. Whether they're distracted or drunk, the motorist may ignore the red light, causing them to enter the intersection with moving traffic, increasing the risk of collision with a vehicle traveling in the opposite direction.

Sometimes, it can be the other way around. The driver who is making the left-hand turn at an intersection may have the right of way while the other motorist may be running a red light.

In such situations, it's crucial to identify who has the right of way. Since running a red light is against the law, the motorist who fails to adhere to the traffic rules may be liable for the damages caused in a T-bone accident.

Running a Red Light

When the traffic signal turns red, drivers must stop and wait for their turn to enter the intersection.

In most cases, inexperienced drivers often see the green light and decide to speed up to make it in time. The traffic signal may turn red just before they enter the intersection, causing a T-bone accident with another car.

Not only is speeding into an intersection an act of recklessness, but the driver also ends up violating the traffic rule by running a red light. When that happens, they may be responsible for the damages in the event of a T-bone accident.

Who Is at Fault in a T-bone Accident in Indiana?

T-bone accidents can also happen in places other than the intersection. Here are a couple of situations and the potentially liable parties:

Exiting a Parking Lot

When exiting a parking lot and onto the roadway, drivers must look at both sides to identify any oncoming vehicles before driving off.

Sometimes distractions, negligence, or carelessness can cause a vehicle to crash into another, resulting in a T-bone accident. In such situations, they may be liable for any damages caused.

Making a U-turn

U-turns can be tricky maneuvers to execute, especially for inexperienced drivers. When making a U-turn, it's important to check the side-view mirrors and the other lane to see whether there are any motor vehicles coming. This can help prevent a T-bone accident.

If a driver fails to pay attention to their surroundings, it could result in a T-bone collision when they pull into traffic. Since they failed to act as any reasonable person would, they may be responsible for any injuries caused in the accident.

Can the Other Driver with the Right of Way Be Liable for a T-bone Accident in Indiana?

Can the Other Driver with the Right of Way Be Liable for a T-bone Accident in Indiana?

While a driver may have the right of way, staying alert and paying attention to the road is important. They may be partially liable for the T-bone collision if they act negligently or carelessly.

Below is an example to help explain how the driver with the right of way may share some fault:

Jack is in a hurry and does not check his surroundings before making a U-turn. His carelessness on the road results in a T-bone accident with another motorist named Frank. The other driver decides to pursue a claim against Jack's insurance company.

Before processing the claim, the insurance company carries out an investigation to determine what happened at the accident scene. The evidence reveals that while Jack was in the wrong, Frank was driving way over the speed limit.

In the example mentioned above, Jack may be responsible for the T-bone accident, but Frank also shares partial responsibility. Depending on the laws of the state, the injured victim may still be able to recover compensation.

Indiana is a modified comparative fault state. The rules allow injured victims to pursue personal injury claims after their T-bone crashes, even if they are partially responsible. If Frank is less than 51% liable for the collision, they may be able to bring a civil action and obtain compensatory damages.

However, under the modified comparative negligence rules, injured victims can only recover damages according to the degree of their fault. Suppose Frank suffered traumatic brain injuries and incurred $500,000 in medical bills and other losses. If he was 40% responsible, he may only recover $300,000.

While the rules may seem straightforward, determining the at-fault driver can be challenging. Plus, the insurance company may create hurdles after the T-bone accident occurs, making it difficult for the affected party to receive a fair settlement offer.

It's crucial for the injured victim to contact a skilled vehicle accident lawyer in Indianapolis for legal representation. They can identify the at-fault driver, gather the necessary evidence, calculate the damages the T-bone accident caused, and hold the responsible party accountable for the losses incurred.

An Experienced Personal Injury Attorney Can Protect the Rights of Injured Victims in Indiana!

T-bone collisions can lead to catastrophic consequences for the injured victims. From substantial medical bills to pain and suffering, mental anguish, reduced quality of life, and more, it could have a devastating impact on the affected party's life. It's only fair that the affected parties pursue legal action to hold the responsible party accountable for their negligent actions.

Those who have suffered injuries in a T-bone accident in Indianapolis, Indiana, should call to schedule a free consultation with the experienced Schuerger Shunnarah Trial Attorneys, as they can help assess the facts surrounding their case and protect their rights against large insurance companies!

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