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Car accident: Potential defendants in personal injury lawsuit

The civil justice system of British Columbia allows injured victims of automobile accidents to pursue financial relief. However, the plaintiff must establish negligence on the part of another party. Determining whom to name can be complicated because not every car accident is the fault of the other driver.

If the other driver failed to take due care, the injured victim could seek to hold him or her liable for damages. Possible negligence includes failure to obey traffic signs, speeding, distractions, impaired driving, illegal passing and more. If a person caused a crash while driving under the influence of alcohol, he or she might not be the only negligent person. Any establishment that serves alcohol to a driver who is clearly over the limit may also be named as a defendant.

In the event of a mechanical or design error in the vehicle, the manufacturers, designers and car dealership that sold the vehicle may be liable. Also, municipalities may be responsible for traffic light malfunctions, unmaintained roads, potholes and accumulations of snow on public roads. If those hazards cause crashes that result in injuries or deaths, liability may be indicated.

Pursuing a personal injury claim in a British Columbia civil court can be challenging. This applies particularly to the establishment of negligence. Fortunately, car accident victims need not navigate such claims without help. An experienced personal injury lawyer can provide the necessary guidance in determining which damages can be included in the documented claims -- including the past and future medical costs and anticipated lost income caused by the injuries. The lawyer can advocate for the injured victim during settlement negotiations or litigation.

Source: FindLaw Canada, "Car accident: Overview", Accessed on Jan. 13, 2017

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