Someone’s Broken Car Caused an Accident; Who Is at Fault?

July 22, 2015 | Attorney, Matthew Dolman
Someone’s Broken Car Caused an Accident; Who Is at Fault? As car owners, we have an implied duty to maintain the health of our automobile(s). Considering that even just a single malfunctioning part can cause a major accident, it should be no surprise that cops go out of their way to give out tickets for things like blown-out brake lights or headlights. I wonder who's tasked to pull over a police cruiser when their lights are out? An emergency service personnel causing an accident may sound slightly ironic, but it's shockingly common! Because there are so many aspects of a car that can fail, and because we're often times overwhelmed with everything else on our plates, we can forget how crucial it is to keep up with standard automobile maintenance. This leads to exploding tires on the highway, brakes failing at a seemingly random time, engine stalls in the middle of an intersection, and much much more--most of which are easily avoidable with a little preventative car care. Being a Car Owner... Just as calling yourself a parent comes with great responsibility and high expectations; holding the title of a “car owner” comes with its own list of reasonable duties. People can't just continue driving carelessly on public roads when their car is knowingly falling apart. If a car's tire is rapidly shredding itself to pieces but the driver chooses to take it down the Courtney Campbell Causeway at 80 miles per hour, they're simply asking to be held responsible for an accident...and they will be! So back to the original question; if you're involved in a car accident and you feel that the other driver's lack of maintenance for his or her car is the sole cause (or contributing cause) to said collision, do you have a viable defense? Well, first you have to ask yourself if their vehicle's defect or malfunction has anything to do with the accident. For example, Driver A's unregulated muffler shouldn't have played a role in Driver B rear-ending them. Driver B will likely be held responsible. On the other hand, Driver A's missing BRAKE LIGHT will very much affect the outcome of that case. Are You Prepared for Your Vehicle to Break Down? Another great example is how a driver reacts to their vehicle's malfunction. If Driver A fails to maintain their tires and, as a result, experiences a blow-out on the highway, they're going to need to have a fast reaction time and great recovery techniques to pull over to the side of the road and call for assistance safely. If, however, their “tire fiasco” causes them to panic and slam on their brakes in the middle of the highway--subsequently getting rear-ended--there could be an entirely different case on the table. Besides the saddening fact that that particular driver's negligence could have just taken multiple lives and is likely to have at least caused some injuries; they've also now damaged someone else's vehicle besides their own. In general, it's the driver in the back of a rear-end collision who is held responsible for the damages--but in this case, the driver in the back would have a good, strong case. Attorneys Are Standing By to Assist You However, this is only one scenario, and the chances of that particular scenario happening to anyone currently reading this are much lower than a simple brake light malfunction. With that said, it's always best to personally speak to a lawyer and present your case and all of the facts and information you have in an organized fashion. When you've done that, an experienced personal injury lawyer would be able to tell you where you stand in any given case and what leverage you hold over the liable party. Furthermore, they can help you tackle the complicated steps that must be taken in any personal injury claim or civil case and can often times ensure that you walk away with the highest amount of financial compensation possible. Here at Dolman Law Group Accident Injury Lawyers, PA, as an attempt to further ease the stress of being involved in an accident, we offer a free consultation and case evaluation, giving you the ability to discuss your case with an experienced personal injury attorney today for no cost to you at all. If you're interested in doing so, contact Dolman Law Group Accident Injury Lawyers, PA today by calling 727-451-6900. Dolman Law Group Accident Injury Lawyers, PA 800 North Belcher Road Clearwater, FL 33756 727-238-7939


Matthew Dolman

Personal Injury Lawyer

This article was written and reviewed by Matthew Dolman. Matt has been a practicing civil trial, personal injury, products liability, and mass tort lawyer since 2004. He has successfully fought for more than 11,000 injured clients and acted as lead counsel in more than 1,000 lawsuits. Always on the cutting edge of personal injury law, Matt is actively engaged in complex legal matters, including Suboxone, AFFF, and Ozempic lawsuits.  Matt is a lifetime member of the Million Dollar Advocates Forum and Multi-Million Dollar Advocates Forum for resolving individual cases in excess of $1 million and $2 million, respectively. He has also been selected by his colleagues as a Florida Superlawyer and as a member of Florida’s Legal Elite on multiple occasions. Further, Matt has been quoted in the media numerous times and is a sought-after speaker on a variety of legal issues and topics.

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