Hit an illegally parked car? Who’s at fault?
Those who drive vehicles must realize that the law holds people accountable for their actions. As a driver, it is your responsibility to drive safely and responsibly. If a car is parked illegally and you hit it, more than likely you will be held responsible.
It may not seem fair but think of it this way. If a car was parked legally and you cause a car accident and damage to the car, wouldn’t you expect to be held liable for any damages to it? If you went in front of a judge, more than likely the judge would tell you that even though the car was parked illegally, you were the one who inflicted the damage. Also, that if you hadn’t been driving your car, the vehicle would not have been damaged. In other words, it took a moving vehicle to cause the damage, and that moving vehicle was yours.
A judge might also say that it was within your power to wait until the car that was parked illegally could be moved by the owner or to have a police officer get it towed. You could have called the police to say that a vehicle is illegally parked, blocking traffic, or just in the way. Then, the police officer could have found and ticketed the driver and requested that the vehicle is moved to another spot. Instead, you took it upon yourself to navigate around the vehicle that was parked illegally and in effect were negligent when you hit it.
Generally speaking, a parked vehicle cannot cause a car accident. One exception to this might be if you were driving and someone pulled in front of you and then stopped. Although they were stopped when you hit them, they can be held liable for the car accident because they pulled in front of your moving vehicle. Another exception might be a vehicle parked sideways at night on a dark street. If you were driving at night and hit that vehicle, the owner of the other vehicle would likely be held responsible for the car accident.
Whether you hit a vehicle that was parked legally or one that was parked illegally, you must always contact your insurance company. Failure to do so will most likely violate one of the terms of your vehicle insurance policy agreement, and the insurance company can then deny coverage for the car accident.
Getting in a car accident can be a tricky situation, one that requires the expertise of an experienced car accident attorney. If you are involved in a minor car accident, with no personal injury, it may not be worth contacting an attorney. In that case, it may be best to let each vehicle owner’s insurance company handle it. But if you are involved in a car accident where someone is injured or there is severe property damage, you should consider contacting a personal injury attorney for advice. If you have any car accident questions, you can contact M&Y Personal Injury Lawyers for a free consultation.