Most vehicle accidents happen on the open road with the driver(s) operating at high speeds. Yet as our experienced car accident attorneys could tell you, it is also possible to get in a serious crash in a parking lot as well. Whether you were hit by another motorist or you were walking and got hit by a car, our Indianapolis parking lot accident lawyer could assist you in securing the funds needed to pay off your medical bills.
It is important to consult with an experienced Indianapolis attorney following an accident in a parking lot. There are many different factors which go into a parking lot case which are not applicable if the accident occurs on the roadway. First, there may or may not be traffic control devices within the parking lot. Many parking lots may also have video surveillance, which can be crucial in determining liability and fault. Parking lots are often considered private property and that may impact the response from the local police.
Most parking lot accidents involve vehicles traveling at far slower speeds than they do on the highway. Additionally, because of the presence of pedestrians walking to and from their cars, this requires drivers to maintain a higher lookout for the safety of others.
Some parking lots in Indianapolis are considered private property and the police will not investigate accidents on private property. In addition to any police involvement, there may be input from the owner of the store or building following an accident on their property. There are also regulations which dictate the layout of parking lots. If it is not designed properly and leads to an accident, the property owner may also be held liable for what transpired.
Insurance companies will investigate parking lot accidents in a slightly different manner. First, if there is no police report, it will make documenting the accident more important. An insurance company places great weight on the police report; and without one, it may complicate the versions of how the accident occurred. Second, parking lot accidents tend to involve fault by more than one person.
For example, someone may be backing out of a parking space and strike an oncoming vehicle. However, the oncoming vehicle also has a duty to drive safely and avoid any potential accidents. Likewise, a vehicle in a parking lot must maintain a lookout for pedestrians, but pedestrians also must maintain a lookout for their own safety. For these reasons, insurance adjusters will typically assign a percentage of fault to all participants in an accident. This is not as common on accidents which occur on the roadways.
An accident need not be the fault of one person or the other: it can be a combination of fault between both parties. This is considered contributory negligence. All parties in a parking lot, whether in a car or a pedestrian, have the duty to keep a reasonable outlook for their own safety. While an accident may be predominantly the fault of one party, it may also be a portion of fault assigned to the injured individual.
Whenever one contemplates hiring a personal injury attorney, it is important to research and select the appropriate lawyer. Experience and professionalism are both important qualities since not all lawyers work in these cases. Parking lot cases tend to be slightly more complicated than those which occur on roads and you should check the qualifications of any lawyer you are considering.
Please contact our Indianapolis parking lot accident lawyer and schedule your consultation.