What You Should Do After A Parking Lot Accident

Ted Cameron 2016-10-16 10:00:00

One of the most common locations to have an accident is in a parking lot. This is fortunate because there is usually little damage due to the low speeds, but injuries in parking lots can be severe, and even fatal. If you’re injured or suffer property damage in any accident in a parking lot, it’s important to know what you should do.

Who’s at Fault?

Figuring out who is at fault can sometimes be hard to determine because a lot of times, drivers don’t know who has the right of way in a parking lot. All of the traffic signs in a parking lot must be followed, and if a driver fails to do so, he or she can be held liable. Some of the other rules that govern parking lots include:

  • A driver who hits a parked car is at fault unless the parked car is parked illegally. In that case, the parked car’s owner is at fault.
  • If your car is hit while you are backing into a main lane or a feeder lane, you are usually considered at fault.
  • A vehicle that is travelling in the main exit or entry lane has the right of way over someone exiting or entering the main lane from a feeder lane. Yield to traffic when leaving a feeder lane, even when there are no traffic signs.
  • If two cars are backing out of spaces at the same time and hit each other, both may be considered at fault.
  • In most cases where a pedestrian is hit in a parking lot, the driver of the car is at fault.
  • If a person opens their car door into another vehicle and damages it, they are at fault.
  • If the driver of a vehicle leaves the car door open and someone hits it, the driver of the parked car is at fault.
  • Anyone who ignores a traffic sign in a parking lot and causes an accident will be held at fault.
  • If your vehicle is hit and the person responsible leaves without talking to you, let your insurance company know right away. If the damage is over $1000, call the police.
  • If an insurance company cannot determine who is at fault, or there is no way of finding the person responsible, the owner of the car may be responsible for the damages.

How and When to Report

No matter if an accident occurs on a roadway or in a parking lot, all parties involved must report the accident to the police or police accident reporting centre according to the Ontario Highway Traffic Act. If any injuries resulted from the collision, you have to call emergency services and help the injured party as much as possible.

Before you leave the scene, take photos of all of the vehicles involved, paying particular attention to the damages. Even if you don’t plan on calling your insurance, do this anyway because the photos will be evidence in case the other driver files a claim and tells the story differently than what happened.

Get Legal Help

If your car is damaged or you’ve been injured in a parking lot accident, you should get in touch with a car accident lawyer right away. He or she can meet with you for a free consultation and help you determine if you want to file a lawsuit or claim. The lawyer can tell you what kind of compensation you may be entitled to, and your rights in your particular situation. 

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