Who Is at Fault in a Rear End Car Collision in New Jersey?

Rear End Accident

A rear-end car collision is one of the most common types of auto accidents. In some cases, this type of accident can result in minimal noticeable damage to the car, but may still injure the persons inside the car. Many rear-end car collisions occur at high speeds and often cause serious injury to the people involved. When anyone is injured as a result of a rear-end collision, one of the parties may pursue a personal injury case to collect damages. However, this requires proving that the other driver was at fault for the collision and the resulting injuries. While many may assume that the rear-end driver is always at fault for a rear-end collision, there are a few exceptions. These exceptions include when the front driver:

  • Suddenly or unexpectedly throws his or her car into reverse
  • Experiences a sudden unexpected illness
  • Fails to execute a turn
  • Has broken tail lights

Even still, the rear driver in a rear-end collision is still the most likely culprit. This is due to every driver having a duty to follow other drivers at a safe distance. Thus, they should have the ability to anticipate sudden stops to prevent a crash. Common reasons why rear drivers fail to uphold this duty include:

  • Distracted driving
  • Aggressive driving
  • Drunk driving
  • Fatigued driving

What Is New Jersey’s Comparative Negligence Law?

In cases where the front driver is partially to blame for the rear-end car collision, New Jersey’s comparative negligence law applies. Essentially, this law states that more than one party can be partially to blame for causing an accident. When this occurs, each party receives an assigned percentage of liability.

In personal injury cases, if you are more than 50 percent liable for an auto accident, then you cannot recover damages. Conversely, at any percentage less than 50 percent, you can pursue damages to cover your injuries. However, the amount of compensation awarded to you will take into account your responsibility for causing the accident. Thus, your percentage of fault will be deducted from the amount of compensation you collect.

What Are Common Injuries in a Rear-End Car Collision?

In a rear-end car collision, the most common types of injuries consist of head, neck, back, knee, shoulder, fractured bones, and spinal cord injuries.

  • Head injuries: During a rear-end car collision, it is common for people to hit their heads on objects in the car. The results can range from minor bruising and swelling to more serious conditions. Also, traumatic brain injuries and concussions can occur if the impact was strong enough. Even banging one’s head into a headrest can cause a traumatic brain injury.
  • Neck injuries: Additionally, one of the most common rear-end car collision injuries is whiplash. Whiplash occurs when the head moves rapidly back and forth, putting strain on the neck. When muscles and discs move too quickly, the neck can stiffen and become painful.
  • Back and spinal cord injuries: Along with head and neck injuries, rear-end car collisions can also strain the muscles, joints, and tissues of the back, creating lasting and chronic pain for the person affected. This severe strain can lead to an injured spinal cord if not treated properly.
  • Knee injuries: Often, one can twist their knee or bang it on the dashboard. On many occasions, this can result in serious injury and the need for surgery.
  • Shoulder injuries: Rotator cuff injuries and other shoulder injuries can occur when the seat belt locks as a person are being thrown about in the vehicle after a rear-end collision.
  • Fractured Bones: Rear-end collisions can cause fractures of the legs, feet, arms, wrists, and fingers. These types of injuries typically occur if you hit something on the inside of the car, whether it be the steering wheel or the dashboard.

Injured in an Auto Accident? Discuss Your Legal Options With Our New Jersey Car Accident Attorneys

People injured in a rear-end car accident can seek damages through litigation. If you are pursuing a personal injury case, then contact Rosner Law Offices, P.C. today at (856) 502-1655 or send us a message online. We offer free consultations to discuss your situation and determine a viable course of action. You can also text us your information for a quick response using the number above.

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