Common St. Petersburg Car Accident Scenarios — Causes & Determining Fault

Car accidents in St. Petersburg often fit only a few scenarios. These scenarios often tell you what injuries the crash will cause and who will bear liability for them.

Florida’s no-fault car insurance system covers at least part of an accident victim’s medical bills and lost wages regardless of fault. But after a severe accident, you might not have the coverage to cover all of your losses resulting from your injuries. Our Attorneys have expertise in cases like St. Petersburg bus accidents, St. Petersburg taxi accidents, catastrophic injuries, brain injuries, and more.

For drivers in St. Petersburg, Florida, understanding common crash causes and how to determine fault and recover compensation for them is vital.

If you need help after a collision, contact Lopez Accident Injury Attorneys to speak with an experienced St. Petersburg car accident lawyer at (727) 933-0015. We work on contingency and offer a free initial consultation, so there’s no obligation. 

How Lopez Accident Injury Attorneys Can Help After a Car Accident in St. Petersburg, FL

How Lopez Accident Injury Attorneys Can Help After a Car Accident in St. Petersburg, FL

Lopez Accident Injury Attorneys was founded in 2018. Since then, our law firm has recovered millions of dollars in compensation for our clients. Together, our St. Petersburg car accident attorneys have over 25 years of experience.

Our lawyers have won some of the legal profession’s highest honors, including a 10.0 Superb rating from Avvo, its highest rating, and the National Trial Lawyers Top 40 under 40.

If you retain our personal injury attorneys after a car accident in St. Petersburg, FL, we’ll: 

  • Ensure you understand your options and the implications of any decisions you make 
  • Investigate the collision to identify the liable parties and how it happened
  • Consult experts and collect evidence proving your claim 
  • Handle communications and negotiations with insurance companies on your behalf
  • File a lawsuit and represent you in court if negotiations fail to yield a fair result

When you pursue personal injury compensation from another party, you must prove fault for the crash. To learn about the compensation you can seek for your car accident injuries, contact Lopez Accident Injury Attorneys for a free consultation.

When Do You Need To Prove Fault for a St. Petersburg Car Crash?

According to the Florida Crash Dashboard, Pinellas County, home to St. Petersburg, had 15,666 car crashes in 2022. These crashes caused 9,214 injuries and 121 fatalities.

Under Florida’s no-fault insurance system, not all of these crashes would be eligible for an insurance claim or lawsuit. Accident victims can only file a lawsuit or insurance claim against another party if their losses exceed their no-fault policy limits or they suffer a significant, permanent injury

These injuries include:

  • Fatal injuries
  • Significant and permanent loss of a body function
  • Significant and permanent scarring or disfigurement
  • Permanent injury other than scarring or disfigurement

Florida does not release statistics stating how many crashes meet these criteria. But you can get an estimate by looking at Pinellas County Court statistics. 

They do not match up exactly, since the court uses a fiscal year and the crash dashboard uses a calendar year. But in the 2021-22 fiscal year, accident victims filed 1,963 lawsuits for motor vehicle negligence.

This seems like a significant number. Florida’s no-fault system was supposed to relieve pressure on courts by providing guaranteed benefits for all registered car owners in the state. In roughly 21% of accidents, the accident victims were not adequately compensated through the no-fault system and as a result, had to file a lawsuit.

In these cases, the victim needs to prove that the cause and fault for the accident lie with the other driver.

Determining Causes and Fault in Common St. Petersburg Car Accident Scenarios

In a car accident case, the fault is based on negligence. To prove negligence, you must show that the other driver failed to exercise reasonable care and that their failure caused your injuries. In many situations, fault arises when the other driver violates traffic law. For example, if the other driver runs a stop sign and hits you, they bear the blame.

But negligence can also happen without violating traffic laws. If someone was distracted by a spilled drink and crashed into you, they did not violate a traffic law, but they still acted negligently.

Some common accident scenarios where these principles determine fault include:

Rear-End Collision

In a rear-end crash, a trailing vehicle runs into the back end of a leading vehicle. Contrary to popular belief, the fault for a rear-end crash does not always fall on the driver of the trailing vehicle.

The trailing driver has a duty to follow at a safe distance. Thus, the trailing driver will bear liability for rear-end crashes resulting from:

But the leading driver might bear liability if the crash happened when the leading driver cut off or brake checked the trailing driver.

Intersection Crash

Intersection crashes can happen for many reasons. But the fault for intersection crashes almost always falls on the person who failed to yield the right of way.

Drivers at an intersection fail to yield the right of way when they:

  • Run a stop sign or red light
  • Turn left in front of an oncoming car with a green light
  • Turn right into the path of an approaching vehicle with a green light
  • Proceed through an intersection out of turn at a stop sign

Intersection crashes often cause serious injuries because they produce angle or side-impact collisions.

Pedestrian Accident

The fault for a pedestrian accident depends on where it happened. At intersections and marked crosswalks, pedestrians have the right of way, and cars must yield. Anywhere else, cars have the right of way, and the pedestrian must yield.

Schedule a Free Consultation With a St. Pete Car Wreck Lawyer

When a car accident causes severe injuries, you will need to prove fault to recover compensation from another party. Contact Lopez Accident Injury Attorneys for a free consultation to discuss your car accident injuries with our experienced and compassionate team today.

Car Accident Cases We Cover