Cars hit each other from behind frequently. In heavy, stop-and-go traffic, one car might merely bump into the car in front of them. While the parties involved might need to pay to get their paint touched up or their bumpers repaired, these minor fender benders usually do not result in any long-term problems. Unfortunately—particularly when one or both drivers are traveling at a high rate of speed—rear-end car accidents in Tacoma can result in various damages, including physical, emotional, and financial setbacks.

As you work on healing and recovering from your injuries, you should meet with an experienced lawyer for advice. A knowledgeable car crash attorney like Chong Ye at The Ye Law Firm could help walk you through the steps necessary for filing a personal injury claim against the negligent driver who hit you from behind.

Common Causes for Rear-End Collisions

Drivers crash into other cars from behind for many different reasons. Some of the most common causes for Tacoma rear-end collisions are as follows:

  • Distracted driving – When motorists are distracted by their cellphones, their passengers, changing the radio, fixing their makeup, or drinking their coffee, they can miss important traffic cues that notify them to slow down or stop
  • Speeding – When motorists drive too fast, they often cannot slow down or stop in time to prevent themselves from slamming into the car in front of them
  • Drowsiness and falling asleep while driving
  • Tailgating – If motorists do not leave sufficient space between them and the car in front of them, they risk causing an accident if the lead car suddenly needs to stop
  • Drunk driving
  • Inexperienced driving
  • Failure to make adjustments when driving in bad weather or dangerous road conditions
  • Accidentally stepping on the accelerator pedal instead of the brake

Regardless of the cause of the wreck, a skilled local attorney like Chong Ye and his experienced team could help. They have extensive experience investigating rear-end collisions in Tacoma and helping survivors gain access to the money that they deserve.

What Happens When the Claimant is Partly to Blame for the Crash?

Most people think that legal cases in Tacoma involving rear-end collisions are simple. People tend to believe that the rear driver is always legally at fault. However, assigning blame is not always that simple.

Sometimes, the lead driver is at least partially responsible for the crash. This can happen when the lead driver suddenly stops short with no warning and for no reason. Another instance where the lead car could be responsible is when there is a problem with the lead car’s brake lights. If the lead car does not have functioning brake lights, a driver of a trailing vehicle would not know that they had slowed down or stopped.

Fortunately, Washington courts operate with a pure comparative negligence standard. That means that courts allow claimants to recover damages even if they are partially to blame for their own injuries. Even if a court concludes that the lead driver was more at fault than the rear driver, the lead driver could still pursue recovery of some damages from the rear driver. Though, if the court determines that the lead driver was partially at fault, they may reduce the lead driver’s recoverable damages in proportion to their degree of blame for the crash. For example, if a lead driver was driving too slowly, a court might determine that they were 10 percent at fault for a rear-end crash. The court could award them damages but would reduce their compensation by 10 percent.

Seasoned legal professionals could explain how Washington courts assign blame in these types of situations during an initial consultation.

Meet with a Tacoma Attorney Regarding a Rear-End Car Crash

Rear-end car accidents in Tacoma are not usually cut and dry. They are frequently more complicated. Insurance companies and defense attorneys often try to deny responsibility. You need to work with a diligent attorney like Chong Ye and his team who can fight back and stand up for your rights.

Contact our dedicated and hardworking legal team at The Ye Law Firm today to get started on your case. Depending on your preferences, we can visit with you in person or virtually.