Who is Liable for Multi-Vehicle Accidents?

When two drivers are involved in a collision, fault is often clear. Although many car accident cases are cut and dry like this, other cases are more complex.

Determining who is liable for a collision involving multiple vehicles can be complicated. Doing so requires in-depth evaluation of the details of the accident, and fault could fall on multiple parties.

Determining Liability for a Multi-Vehicle Accident

The way in which liability for a multi-vehicle accident is determined will differ between cases. The details of these collisions can vary widely, and there is no single proven method for identifying a liable party.

Finding out who is liable for a multi-vehicle accident may involve investigating photographs and surveillance footage, or relying on witness accounts and the input of experts. Accident reconstructionists may be able to look at the damage on each vehicle and piece together the events. Liability can also be determined by examining the negligence of each person driving and seeing if anyone involved was under the influence, distracted, speeding, or otherwise reckless during the collision.

Contributory Negligence in Georgia

Multi-vehicle accidents are complex not only because it is difficult to identify a liable party, but also because multiple parties are often at fault.

Georgia law accounts for situations such as these. The state has contributory negligence laws in place. Contributory negligence allows for multiple drivers to be identified as partially liable for a car accident, with each liable party’s available compensation being reduced according to their degree of fault. Liability does not bar a driver from receiving compensation for their damages unless it is determined that the driver was over 50% responsible for the car accident.

In a car accident involving four drivers, it may be determined that three drivers were partially liable and the remaining driver shared no responsibility for the collision. If two of the drivers were each 20% at fault for the car accident and the third at-fault driver was 60% responsible, the majoritively at-fault driver would not be able to recover any compensation for their injuries. The other two at-fault drivers would have their compensation reduced by 20% each, and the driver who was injured but was not at fault would be able to recover the full amount of compensation they are entitled to. For example, if each driver incurred $50,000 in damages, the 60% at-fault driver would not be compensated, the two other at-fault drivers would each receive $40,000, and the fourth driver would receive the full $50,000.

If you were injured in a car accident, Busch, Reed, Jones & Leeper, P.C. can help you determine who is at fault and recover the compensation you deserve. We are available for free case evaluations to discuss the details of your claim.

To schedule a consultation with our attorneys, send us a message or call (770) 629-0154.