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Michael Agruss

Written and Reviewed by Michael Agruss

  • Managing Partner and Personal Injury Lawyer at Mike Agruss Law.
  • Over 20 years of experience in Personal Injury.
  • Over 8000+ consumer rights cases settled.
  • Graduated from the University of Illinois Chicago School of Law: Juris Doctor, 2004.

“Back up accidents” commonly occur in parking lots, as well as residential streets and similar areas, and fault is not always clear-cut. If you or a loved one has been injured in a back up accident, contact our attorneys today to ensure that your rights are protected and you can receive full compensation for your injuries and losses.

When a driver is backing up, often out of a parking space, and collides with another vehicle or pedestrian, it is not necessarily the fault of the moving driver, but rather depends on the specific circumstances of the accident. Typically, the driver who’s backing up is moving into a public road where other cars are moving in each direction, and so the driver on the road has the right-of-way. However, the driver on the road could still be liable for an accident if he/she was distracted, speeding, or negligent in some other manner.

If the car that is backing up is at a complete stop when the accident occurs, it may be difficult to hold that driver liable; in such a case, the responsibility to drive with caution when the roadway is blocked may instead put liability on the driver on the road. In some cases, the location of the vehicular damage can also play a role and shed light on exactly how the accident occurred. For example, rear damage to the vehicle that was backing up may indicate that he/she was at fault for the accident, while damage to the side might imply that the driver on the road had sufficient time to react to the obstruction, but didn’t.

In any case, witness statements are extremely valuable in helping to determine fault due to the seemingly-unclear nature of how right of way rules apply to vehicles moving in reverse. If you’ve been in an accident and are safely able to obtain the contact information of any witnesses to the accident, doing so is highly recommended.

Here are some of the most common back up accidents, which often occur in parking lots:

In the first, a car backs out of a parking space and strikes a parked vehicle. In this case, fault is clear: the parked car wasn’t moving and possibly wasn’t even occupied, and the other driver is at fault. However, there are potential exceptions even in this situation, such as when the parked car was parked illegally, i.e. in an unlawful location.

In the second, a car backs out of a parking space and strikes another moving vehicle. In these case, the driver that was backing up is often held liable, as it is his/her responsibility to check for cars moving through the path of their reversing vehicle before proceeding. However, in some cases, the other driver may be liable if he/she was speeding, distracted, or intoxicated when the accident occurred.

When two cars strike each other while backing up at the same time, it’s possible for legal liability to be split two ways. In that situation, each driver would have had the same responsibility to watch for other vehicles in their path, and so a resulting accident may not entirely be the fault of one driver or the other.

Fault can be difficult to determine in backup accidents, so having an attorney on your side is essential to ensure that the at-fault driver can be held accountable and you may be compensated for the damages.

We at Mike Agruss Law are proud to serve our fellow citizens in personal injury cases, especially when you or a loved one has been injured in an accident, and we are fully committed to protecting your rights and ensuring that the other party is held legally accountable when negligence occurs. We will fight until the very end to ensure that you are fully compensated for all injuries and losses resulting from the accident, including medical expenses, property damage, lost wages, and pain and suffering, and you won’t owe us a dime for our services.

If you or a loved one has been injured in an accident due to another’s negligence, contact Mike Agruss Law today for a free consultation. We are a Chicago-based personal injury law firm, and helping our clients is about counseling, advocating, and ultimately solving problems. With years of experience successfully representing the people and not the powerful, we will file your claim and take care of the insurance company, medical bills, property damage, and lost income. We will handle your case quickly and advise you every step of the way, and we will not hesitate to go to trial for you. Lastly, our personal injury lawyers are not paid attorney fees unless we win your case. Our no-fee promise is that simple. You have nothing to risk when you hire us – only the opportunity to seek justice.

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