Who Is Liable In A Multi-Vehicle Accident – Road Accident Claims
Have you been injured in a chain-reaction car accident? Are you wondering who is liable in the event of a multi-vehicle accident?
To make a personal injury compensation claim for a road traffic accident of this kind, it will be helpful to learn who is liable in a multi-vehicle accident. Due to the large number of vehicles involved, it can be difficult to know who caused it. There are many factors that can help to decide this, which this guide will explore.
Before reading this article, you may have questions such as:
- How is fault determined in a multi-car accident?
- Who is at fault in a chain reaction accident?
- Can you be personally liable in a car accident?
- How can the whiplash reforms affect my claim?
In 2021, the government introduced new legislation changing the way that drivers and passengers over the age of 18 can claim for any injuries that are valued at £5,000 or below. In accordance with the Whiplash Injury Regulations 2021, any claims of this nature must be made through the government’s new online portal.
This guide will answer these questions and more to give you as much clarity, understanding, and support as possible. If you want to start a personal injury claim today, our advisers are here to help.
Get In Touch With Our Team
If you’re not liable in a multi-vehicle accident and suffered injuries due to someone else’s negligence, you may be eligible to make a personal injury claim. Compensation for personal injuries are usually awarded by the faulty parties vehicle insurance.
Our friendly team of advisers can offer you free legal advice surrounding who is liable in a multi-vehicle accident. If your claim is valid, an adviser could forward you to our panel of personal injury lawyers to begin working on your personal injury claim.
To get in touch with our team of advisers, we recommend you:
- Call 020 3870 4868. An adviser is always available to offer free legal advice.
- Start your claim online to receive a reply as soon as possible.
- Chat with one of our advisers via our online chat pop-up box for an instant response.
If you discuss your case with our team of advisers, there is no obligation to continue to use our services. However, our team of advisers could be able to connect you with our panel of personal injury lawyers.
Services And Information
- Everything You Need To Know About Liability In A Multi-Vehicle Accident
- What Is A Multi-Vehicle Accident?
- Causes Of Multi-Vehicle Pile-Ups And Accidents
- Multi-Vehicle Accidents Caused By Poor Weather
- Multi-Vehicle Collisions Caused By Sudden Braking
- Multiple-Vehicle Collisions Caused By Damaged Vehicles
- Calculate Compensation For Multi-Vehicle Accidents
- Liability For Multi-Vehicle Accidents
- How Insurance Companies Could Attribute Liability
- Split Liability Accident Claims
- Accidents Involving Crash For Cash Scams
- I Think I Was Involved In A Crash-For-Cash Scheme, What Should I Do?
- Time Limits To Make A Multi-Vehicle Accident Claim
- I Was Injured In A Multi-Vehicle Accident, What Should I Do?
- Claim For A Multi-Vehicle Accident On A No Win No Fee Basis
- Related Guides
- FAQs About Liability In A Multi-Vehicle Accident
Firstly, this article will discuss what a multi-vehicle accident is and what liability for a car accident means. Next, there will be a discussion of the causes of multi-vehicle pile-ups, as this may help discover who is liable in a multi-vehicle accident. There will then be two sections looking at how poor weather and sudden braking can cause this type of road traffic accident.
After this, the article will explore how damaged vehicles can cause a multi-vehicle accident. Following on from this, there will be a section exploring how liability for multi-vehicle collisions is decided.
Next, the article will look at crashes for cash scams and talk about how to prove someone has caused a collision on purpose to gain compensation. There will also be a section about what you should do if you’ve been involved in a crash for cash scam.
Next, the article will outline the personal injury claims time limit to assess how much time you have left to start a personal injury claim. There will then be some guidance on what steps you can take if you’ve been involved in a multi-vehicle accident, including what evidence you should gather. After this, you’ll be able to see why our panel of personal injury lawyers work on a No Win No Fee basis and what this means.
There will also be some related guides to give you as much information as possible about who could be liable in a multi-vehicle accident. Finally, to address any more questions you might have, there will be some commonly asked questions about this type of road traffic accident.
A multi-vehicle accident occurs when many vehicles are involved in a crash. It’s also known as a pile-up collision, as the vehicles pile up against each other. Evidently, this can be extremely dangerous as passengers and drivers can become trapped between 2 cars and suffer severe injuries.
The graph below includes statistics taken from GOV.UK shows the number of fatal reported road accidents in Great Britain between 2015 and 2020.
What Is Liability For A Car Accident?
The driver who is at fault for a car accident is liable. This means that they caused the car crash and, therefore, their insurance may be liable for personal injury claims. You can determine liability by examining multiple pieces of evidence, such as witness statements or CCTV footage.
There are various different ways that a driver can be liable in a multi-vehicle accident. Travelling too close to the car in front can mean that you are not leaving enough braking distance. If the car in front had to stop suddenly this could have a domino effect. This is because the vehicle behind them may crash into them, then the vehicle behind may crash into that car, etc.
These accidents can be prevented by:
- Vehicles keeping significant space between each other. This is so that if a vehicle stops or crashes, the vehicle behind has time to brake.
- Driving at the speed limit. This is a legal requirement as it can help prevent accidents (or lessen the severity of potential accidents).
Poor weather means poor road conditions which have the potential to cause multi-vehicle collisions. Poor weather conditions, such as rain or fog, can make it hard for drivers to see the road properly. This could cause them to drive too close to the car in front of them.
Therefore, they may not allow themselves enough time to stop if the car in front suddenly brakes. Similarly, this could happen if they fail to see hazards on the road, such as a pothole or debris.
Alternatively, the driver may be able to see the road but poor weather may cause dangerous road conditions, such as ice or rain causing a slippery surface. If a driver does not leave extra room for braking when there are poor road conditions this may cause them to crash and could result in a multiple vehicle accident.
Another significant factor in multi-vehicle collisions is sudden braking. The most important thing to remember is to create a reasonable distance between vehicles on the road, particularly on motorways.
This is so that if the vehicle in front does suddenly brake, you have a sufficient amount of time to brake safely. Driving too close to the vehicle in front of you may mean you’re unable to brake in time and consequently crash into them. If a vehicle crashes into the back of the vehicle in front, the vehicle behind is usually seen as liable in a multi-vehicle accident.
If multiple vehicles are travelling closely together and the vehicle at the front suddenly brakes, there’s likely to be a domino effect. This is because each driver behind is unlikely to have enough time to brake, resulting in multiple vehicles crashing into each other. This can be extremely dangerous as multiple drivers and passengers are involved and may experience serious injuries.
Poorly maintained or damaged vehicles have the potential to cause road traffic accidents. A vehicle with poorly pressurised or damaged tyres is unlikely to be capable of braking quickly and safely if they need to. Driving can often be a smooth experience, but there are times when the road will be damaged or there will be poor weather conditions and a vehicle will suddenly brake.
If they’re unable to use their brakes because their braking system is damaged, they may crash into a vehicle and cause the vehicles behind to crash too. This can cause a pile-up of vehicles.
Call our advisors if you are unsure who is liable in your multi-vehicle accident.
If your road traffic accident compensation claim is successful your settlement will comprise of potentially two heads of claim. Firstly we look at general damages that look to compensate for the pain and suffering caused by your injuries.
We’ve included a table including figures taken from the Judicial College Guidelines. The JCG is a document used by legal professionals to value what a claim could be worth, as it presents a list of injuries alongside guideline compensation brackets. You can find some examples of these brackets in the table below. It’s important to note that if you are making a claim for injuries valued at £5,000 or under for a driver or passenger over the age of 18, the figures shown do not apply in accordance with the Whiplash Injury Regulations 2021.
|Psychiatric Damage||Moderate (c)||Trouble coping with work, life and education, but with some improvement and a good prognosis.||£5,500 to £17,900|
|PTSD||Moderate (c)||Cases of large recovery, with no grossly disabling continuing effects.||£7,680 to £21,730|
|Leg Injuries||Moderate (iv)||Complicated, multiple fractures or severe crushing injuries to a single limb.||£26,050 to £36,790|
|Knee Injuries||Severe (a) (i)||Disruption of the joint, gross ligamentous damage, development of osteoarthritis, and lengthy treatment.||£65,440 to £90,290|
|Chest Injuries||Traumatic Injuries (b)||Traumatic injury to the heart, chest and/or lungs causing permanent damage.||£61,710 to £94,470|
|Ankle Injuries||Very Severe (a)||Transmalleolar fracture with extensive soft-tissue damage.||£46,980 to £65,420|
|Digestive System Injuries||Traumatic Injuries (iii)||Stab wounds or seatbelt pressure injuries.||£6,190 to £11,820|
|Kidney Injuries||Serious (a)||Loss of or serious damage to both kidneys.||£158,970 to £197,480|
|Pelvis Injuries||Severe (a) (i)||Extensive fractures to the pelvis involving other complications, such as dislocated back or ruptured bladder.||£73,580 to £122,860|
|Amputation of One Foot||N/A||Amputation of one foot.||£78,800 to £102,890|
Compensation for the injury itself and the physical and mental impact it’s had on your life is called general damages. The amount you receive is generally dependent on the severity of your injuries and the length of your treatment time.
Compensation for the financial effect the injuries have had on you is known as special damages. It’s difficult to qualify for special damages without providing sufficient evidence to prove your financial loss. An example of this evidence could be bank statements to show that you spent money on prescription medication for your injuries.
When assessing who’s liable in a multi-vehicle accident, evidence is crucial. Rule 126 of the Highway Code states that you must drive at a distance that allows you to stop in time if the driver in front suddenly brakes.
There are multiple ways to find out who is liable in a multi-vehicle accident:
- Police: The police often have a large role to play in identifying who is at fault in a chain-reaction road accident. They can do this by taking witness statements that explain what they saw at the scene of the accident. This can help them find out how the accident happened and, therefore, who may have been at fault.
- Personal injury solicitor: If you choose to hire representation, your personal injury lawyer can help you gather evidence. This includes witness statements, photos of the accident scene, and possible CCTV footage.
Insurance companies will begin their own investigations to see who is liable in a multi-vehicle accident. Firstly, they may assess the timeline of the events that took place, as identifying what order the events took place can help significantly in understanding who caused the pile-up.
The police report can help identify the timeline of events and outline who may be negligent. Recovering costs from the other driver’s insurance companies can prove difficult when it’s unclear who is liable in a multi-vehicle accident.
If it’s found that more than one driver is at fault for the road traffic accident, a split liability claim may be introduced. So fault will be split. This can be between multiple drivers.
If you are making a personal injury claim when partially at fault for the accident this may mean you will only be awarded a reduced percentage of the compensation to take into account your part in the incident.
What evidence could support a multi-vehicle accident claim?
- Police reports: The police will accumulate a police report when they visit the scene of the accident.
- CCTV footage: CCTV footage from the accident can help determine who may be liable.
- Witness statements: Taking the details of any potential witnesses can be helpful. This ensures they can make a statement later on in the claim.
There are multiple ways that more than one driver could be liable in a multi-vehicle accident. For example, when the front vehicle has to stop suddenly but the vehicle behind and the vehicle behind that vehicle are not leaving enough room this can mean vehicles 2 and 3 are share some liability.
It may not always be clear who is liable or whether liability is shared in a road traffic accident. If you have any questions about liability for a multi-vehicle road accident call our trained advisors. They can assess your case and provide free legal advice with no obligation.
A crash for cash scam often occurs when a driver suddenly brakes on purpose to cause you to crash into the back of them. Since the driver who crashed into the back of a vehicle is usually at fault, the aim is for the driver in front to claim compensation through the other party’s insurance, even though the crash was fraudulent. This is a way for them to claim compensation.
- Notify the police as soon as you can.
- Gather witness details so that statements can be taken
- Take photos of both vehicles and their registration plates to use as evidence.
- Note down how many passengers are in their vehicle. Sometimes fraudsters hold as many passengers as possible so they can claim more money.
Contact our expert team of advisers to receive free legal advice.
The general personal injury claim time limit is three years. That counts as three years from the date of the accident or three years from when you realise your injuries are a result of someone else’s negligence. However, there are some exceptions to this rule.
If you’re under 18, the three-year time limit begins from your 18th birthday. Similarly, if you’re mentally incapacitated, the three-year time limit begins when your recovery commences. Alternatively, someone you trust can become a litigation friend to claim on your behalf if you’d like to claim earlier.
If you’ve been involved in a multi-vehicle accident, the first thing you should do is seek medical attention. It’s in your best interests to receive medical attention as soon as possible for your injuries.
After this, you should gather as much evidence as you can to convey who is liable in a multi-vehicle accident. You can provide a medical report to show the severity of any injuries. Additionally, you can provide CCTV footage, photos of your injuries and vehicle, and witness details.
You should also gather financial evidence, such as bank statements to prove loss of earnings or bus tickets to prove you paid your own money to travel to medical appointments. This can help you receive special damages. After this, why not think about contacting a personal injury lawyer to help you begin your personal injury claim.
Our panel of personal injury lawyers can discuss working on a No Win No Fee basis with you. No Win No Fee is a contractual agreement between you and your solicitor in which you pay no upfront or ongoing fees to your solicitor.
If your case loses, you won’t have to pay any of your solicitor’s fees. If your case succeeds, your lawyer will take a success fee from your compensation. This fee consists of a small percentage with a legal cap.
To get in touch with our team of advisers, you can:
- Call 020 3870 4868. An adviser is readily available to chat with you.
- Chat with an advisor on the chat pop-up box. An adviser is ready to talk to you today.
- Start your claim online. Our team of advisers will respond as soon as possible.
How Does The Road Traffic Accident Claims Process Work? – This article provides more information for those wondering how road traffic accident claims work.
When And How To Report A Car Accident – Road Traffic Accident Compensation Claims – Have you been in a car accident that wasn’t your fault? Our guide explains how you can make a personal injury claim.
Pedestrian Hit By A Car At A Junction – If you’ve been hit by a car at a junction, our article can explore who may be eligible for compensation.
How do I know if I’ve Broken a Bone? – If you suspect you may be suffering from a broken bone, this NHS guide includes the signs, treatment, and recovery for a bone fracture.
Road Traffic Act 1988 – This piece of legislation contains the laws, rules, and regulations of the road.
How will the changes to whiplash laws affect my claim?
If you are a driver or passenger over the age of 18 and your injuries are valued at £5000 or less, you must make your personal injury claim in a different way.
Can I still make a whiplash injury claim?
You can still make a whiplash injury claim.
Thank you for reading this article about who is liable in a multi-vehicle accident.