Getting Damages and Making Claims When You are Run off the Road
When you are in a car accident, you probably expect that at some point, there is or was, an actual impact—that is, that one car will actually hit another. But what about a situation where that doesn’t happen—where one car forces you off the road, or forces you to collide with an object, but you never actually hit the other car with the negligent driver?
It can seem like a difficult situation. After all, if a driver forces you off the road, and doesn’t actually impact your car, that driver probably drives off. Who is there to sue? You don’t even know who the other driver actually was.
How Do These Accidents Happen?
It’s a situation that can and does happen very often.
Cars may change lanes improperly, and then correct themselves but the threat of the impact forces your car off the road. Cars may almost get into accidents and then “overcorrect” themselves, impeding on your right of way. Cars may suddenly and without warning slam their brakes on, causing you to veer into oncoming traffic to avoid the impact.
Making a Claim
Initially, if you are in a “run off the road” accident, your insurance company may deny the claim, on the obvious grounds that there is no proof that the accident happened the way that you say it happened.
But there may well be witnesses to the accident, and those witnesses may have spoken to police. Additionally, there may have been other cars involved in the accident that did actually impact the car that forced you into the accident. Many intersections may have intersection red light cameras, which may have recorded the accident on video.
Sometimes there may be physical marks on a roadway—for example, the missing driver may have left tire marks near where you were run off the road, indicating the speed and direction that the vehicle was driving.
Who WIll Pay Compensation?
But proving how the accident happened still doesn’t solve another problem: Just because you can prove that someone else ran you off the road doesn’t mean you can identify who it was. And with no person or driver to make a claim against, there may be no insurance.
You may have an uninsured motorist on your insurance policy. That coverage will “stand in the shoes” of the other missing (phantom) driver, and pay you the same way that the other driver would have done, if he or she had been identified.
Of course, because it stands in the shoes of the other driver, it will also mount whatever defenses the other driver would have or could have mounted, had the driver been in court to defend him or herself.
Were you injured in an accident where another driver forced, or ran you off the road? Call the Knoxville personal injury attorneys at Fox Farley Willis & Burnette, PLLC, for help today.