What if a Driver Lies About Causing an Accident?
If a driver lies to the police or insurers about causing your crash, it can become much more difficult to prove what really happened, and the insurance company may even deny your claim. How can you protect your ability to recover compensation for your medical costs and other damages? In Nevada, there are several laws drivers must comply with after being in or causing a crash. This includes providing truthful details about how an accident happened. Drivers who lie to the police or insurance company are breaking the law and may face serious consequences if caught. At High Stakes Injury Law, we have been helping injured victims for years. We know how another driver’s lies could hurt your ability to get the compensation you need. Our car accident attorneys in Las Vegas know how to gather the necessary evidence and are ready to fight to prove your claim. Call our law offices today to learn if you have legal options. We are here to help, and your initial consultation is completely free.
Why Would a Driver Lie About an Accident?If a driver lies about causing an accident, he or she probably has no doubt that he or she was in the wrong. This may be the case if the crash happened because that driver was tailgating you, ran a red light or failed to yield the right of way. Maybe the driver is also trying to cover up some other traffic violation, such as driving distracted or while under the influence. Regardless of the reason, an at-fault driver most likely lies about a crash to avoid the consequences, which could include:
- Being assessed with hefty fines
- Getting a ticket for committing a traffic violation
- Paying higher auto insurance premiums
- Having his or her license suspended
- Being arrested
- Liability for the resulting damages
What if the At-Fault Driver Tries to Say a Mechanical Issue Caused The Crash?At-fault drivers who lie often get pretty creative with their stories. For instance, they may say their car brakes failed. They may even try to blame you. For instance, if a driver rear-ends you and says it is your fault because your brake or taillights were not working. That said, it is important to mention that sometimes a mechanical problem could lead to a crash. For instance, a driver’s brakes could have failed, and that could have been why he or she hit your car. However, if the mechanical failure is due to poor car maintenance, that driver may still be liable for your damages.
What if the Driver Fled the Scene After Hitting My Car?Hit-and-run accidents are quite common and make it harder for a crash victim to recover compensation. In this situation the at-fault driver may lie to the insurance company to get coverage for his or her own vehicle while avoiding having to pay for yours. A driver may also flee the scene of a crash if he or she was:
- Under the influence of alcohol or other substances
- Driving with a suspended license for a prior traffic violation
- Operating a vehicle with an expired tag or without insurance
- Driving a vehicle that was stolen or involved in a crime
How Can You Protect Your Claim if a Driver Lies About Causing an Accident?Call police immediately after the crash. Once there, the responding officer will investigate what happened. During this process, you may hear the other driver lie about causing the crash. As angry as that may make you feel, and rightly so, everything you do next is critical to protecting your claim.
Remain CalmAs hard as it is to hear the other driver lie, getting angry or arguing about it will only make matters worse. It is better to stay calm. The officer takes statements from all drivers in a crash, so you will have the opportunity to tell your side. When you do speak with the officer, be courteous, calm and clear. Speak the facts without rambling and do not say anything about being sorry or feeling guilty. These kinds of statements could translate to others as an admission of fault. It is worth mentioning that you will need to repeat your statement multiple times throughout the legal process. The at-fault party will as well, and remembering the truth is always easier than remembering a lie. The truth remains consistent, while a driver who lies is likely to be inconsistent with his or her story.
Gather Evidence at the SceneTake photos of any vehicle damage, the crash scene as a whole (with both vehicles) and anything else you think may be helpful. Write down what you remember about events leading up to the crash as soon after the accident as you can. You will remember more details right after the crash than if you wait.
Seek Medical Care ImmediatelyYou may have heard this many times before, but seeking emergency medical care after a crash protects your health and your claim. Your medical records on the day provide a diagnosis and help to link your injuries to the crash. Following up with your care also establishes the severity of the damages you sustained.
Do Not Delay Calling for Legal HelpIt is never too soon to call a lawyer. Many crash victims wait to seek legal help because they are worried about the cost. However, at our firm, your initial consultation is completely free, and if we represent you, there is nothing to pay either up front or while we work on your case. If we represent you, we know how to build a strong case on your behalf. For instance, we may:
- Research the other driver’s records for prior tickets or claims
- Check if the other driver has a history of being dishonest
- Consult with an accident reconstructionist
Remember the Insurance Company Does Its Own InvestigationNo matter what the other driver says, the insurance company will also investigate what happened. They are a for-profit business, so they are not going to take any driver’s statement at face value without checking it out. This is important to remember, because what you do and say from right after the crash and throughout the legal process can help to either build or destroy your credibility. For instance:
- Be truthful about the crash, but do not embellish
- Do not hide relevant facts, such as a preexisting injury
- Never exaggerate or lie about the injuries you sustained
- Follow the legal advice offered by your attorney
Are There Penalties for Lying About a Car Crash?Whether the person lies when giving a verbal or written statement, lying about a crash in Nevada is a gross misdemeanor, punishable by:
- At least $2,000 in fines and/or
- Up to 364 days in jail