A large number of accidents occur in parking lots, you just don’t hear about them on the news because there aren’t any casualties. Nonetheless, the majority of rules that apply to car accidents that occur on roads also apply to car accidents that occur in parking lots. For instance, leaving the scene of the accident without giving your personal information would still be considered a crime. If you’ve been involved in a parking lot accident, this article will detail how you should respond.
Will Police Respond to My Parking Lot Accident?
There’s no guarantee that they will. Police generally respond to accidents on the road because they need to perform several duties. Their foremost duty is to ensure the safety of drivers on the road and those involved in the accident. Next comes the part where they take an incident report. But since parking lot accidents generally don’t stop the flow of traffic or have serious injuries, police may not respond.
What Should I Do After a Parking Lot Accident?
If you struck another car in a parking lot, you should attempt to inform the other driver that you struck their car. If this isn’t possible, then you’ll want to leave your information on the car that you struck so that they have an opportunity to report the incident to the insurance company.
You will also want to take pictures of the damage you caused to ensure that the other driver doesn’t try to overcharge you for the accident. There may also be security personnel around and many parking lots have their activity recorded by closed-caption video. If the other vehicle’s owner comes out to find there has been damage done to their car, you can bet that they will be asking the parking lot personnel for footage of the accident.
Who is Liable in a Parking Lot?
This depends entirely on the situation, but whoever is actually in their vehicle at the time of an accident is usually liable. If both drivers are in their vehicles, then right-of-way laws would determine who is liable. If the car is illegally parked or otherwise not where it’s supposed to be, that could reduce your liability for the accident, but it likely wouldn’t erase your liability entirely.
Can a Parking Lot Be Held Liable for an Accident?
Yes. In certain cases, a parking lot owner may be held wholly or partially liable for an accident. If they created a dangerous condition on their premises that later led to an accident, an argument could be made that they should take responsibility for the accident.
Will My Insurance Cover a Parking Lot Accident?
That depends on the type of coverage you have. If you were responsible for the parking lot accident and the other driver is attempting to get compensation, your liability coverage would pay out to the other driver.
However, if you want the damage to your own car covered, you have to have collision coverage on your vehicle and then file a claim on your own insurance policy.
Should I Hire a Lawyer for a Parking Lot Accident?
Most parking lot accidents can be easily resolved by two parties who want to put the matter behind them, but insurance companies sometimes get in the way of that process and refuse to cover damage, squabble over liability, or otherwise throw a wrench in the process.
If your car has been damaged in a hit-and-run accident, you should hire a lawyer who can subpoena video footage and hold the other driver responsible.
Before moving forward, you should definitely consult a skilled personal injury or car accident attorney to handle your claim. Call Brylak Law today for a free consultation.