Have you been blamed for an accident that you did not cause? Perhaps you were not solely responsible for it? If you find yourself in such a situation, contact one of our expert solicitors located in Hurstville, Crows Nest and Waterloo to help defend you or submit an inquiry online.
The case below involves our client who came to us in regards to a motor vehicle incident that he had recently been involved in.
The accident was not an unusually peculiar or uncommon one. In fact, it was one that reflects many accidents resulting from people’s carelessness on the roads. If you are involved in a road accident, the best thing for both parties is to stay calm (difficult sometimes!), take necessary photos of the vehicles and exchange relevant details.
However, many times one party will not always be cooperative. In fact, it is not uncommon for the party at fault to place the blame on the innocent party. Therefore, we at Lincoln Legal believe that it is critical for drivers to know their rights if a dispute arises. Take a look at the case below.
Our client was driving on down a two-lane street towards a T-intersection. Cars were parked on the left lane. Our client was approaching a taxi that was stationed in the left lane in a no stopping area, with its hazard lights blinking. Before driving past the taxi, our client indicated with his left blinker in order to merge into the left lane. He drove slowly past the taxi and was already merging into the left lane when he heard and felt a collision on the back-left side of his car. Lo and behold, the taxi had driven into our client’s vehicle.
Taxi Driver’s Conduct
Our client had abided by the road rules – not speeding, using his indicators. The taxi driver’s conduct in accelerating when our client was merging into the lane, was clearly negligent and the main cause of the accident.
However, the taxi driver was completely unapologetic and uncooperative. In fact, he was adamant that the crash was the fault of our client! After taking photos and exchanging details, they parted ways.
Our Client Was Unfairly Blamed
A few days later, our client received a letter from the company that owned the taxi vehicle. The content of the letter placed the blame on our client and further requested insurance details from our client to proceed with the claim. The letter also stated that if our client was not to comply with their request, legal proceedings would commence.
A week after receiving the first letter our client received a letter from a law firm who represented the company which owned the taxi with content that was more or less the same as the first letter.
Such an incident is a great example of drivers needing to know their rights. The conduct of the taxi driver and its owner company is completely unacceptable. They were attempting to take complete advantage of our client who had done no wrong.
HOW DID WE HELP?
Luckily our client knew better and contacted us to assist him with the problem he was facing.
Our experienced lawyers at Lincoln Legal ensured that our client’s case was sufficiently and properly prepared by obtaining relevant information, quotes and photographs of the incident. Relevant road rules, legislation and regulations were also assessed.
We wrote back to the other law firm and presented the facts that clearly showed the taxi driver was negligent in that he:
- Failed to comply with numerous road rules
- Failed to keep a proper lookout
- Failed to drive in a safe manner
- Failed to keep a safe distance from the vehicle in front
- Failed to avoid colliding with our client’s vehicle
We also made it clear that we will subpoena for video, photographic and other digital media from the security camera system within the taxi as required under the Point to Point Transport (Taxis and Hire Vehicles) Act 2016.
Furthermore, the company owning the taxi vehicle may have been held vicariously liable for the taxi driver’s negligence. Simply speaking, this means that the company would also be held responsible even though it was the taxi driver’s fault.
In the end, the taxi driver and the company that owned the taxi dropped their claim against our client and our client had the choice whether to pursue their claim against the taxi driver and the company.
Disclaimer: The information above is intended to be general information only and it should not be relied upon it as legal advice. If you seek professional advice please feel free to contact the team at Lincoln Legal or make an enquiry.