Due to the fact that most parking lots are privately owned, these claims can be incredibly complex. For example, it can be difficult to determine whether the owner of the parking lot can be held liable. Because of this, it is important to work with an Omaha parking lot accident lawyer who can bring a claim against the appropriate party or parties. A well-versed car accident lawyer can help you get the compensation you are entitled to.
What Makes Parking Lot Accidents Unique?
When an accident occurs in a parking lot, one of the biggest differences is that it is not on a public street or highway. Parking lots are often considered private property. When someone is injured in a private parking lot or parking garage, the rules of the road do not necessarily apply and determining liability may be more difficult. It will affect the determination of negligence by the insurance adjustor in many situations.
In a parking lot, a driver going too fast is more likely to be found negligent. There is an expectation in a parking garage or parking lot that a person must drive at a safe speed due to vehicles coming in and out of parking spaces. A driver also needs to have a higher level of vigilance because one never knows when a pedestrian is going to appear from between the cars.
Determining Negligence in an Omaha Garage Accident
An owner of a parking lot or a parking garage is fairly well-insulated from liability for damages that occur in the ordinary use of the parking lot. However, that could change if a person can show negligence on part of the property owner such as:
- Failure to maintain the premises
- Improper negligent design of the parking lot
- Failure to remove snow and ice
Unless negligence is shown independent from the conduct of the driver causing injury, the at-fault driver and the injured party are the principal parties in a claim for an accident in a parking lot or parking garage.
It is important to understand contributory negligence. Contributory negligence is when the injured party’s own conduct caused the accident. It is not necessarily a conclusive factor unless what the individual did was also negligent. Therefore, contributory negligence requires an independent evaluation of whether the injured party’s conduct was itself negligent.
Insurance Companies in Parking Lot Accidents
With parking lot accidents, insurance companies are interested in the facts and circumstances because the accident occurred on private property. There are generally no clearly defined rules of the road in private parking lots and garages. There may be signs that direct traffic, however unlike a street where if someone drives the wrong way down a street they are in violation of a municipal or state ordinance resulting in a clear determination of liability, in a parking garage, there is not necessarily clear liability for violating a statute. A determination must be made whether the driver did something that was a breach of a duty to use reasonable care.
How an Omaha Parking Lot Accident Attorney Can Help
The most important issue when hiring an attorney for a parking lot accident is to find an attorney with recent and relevant experience in parking lot accident cases. The injured person also needs to make sure they can have a good working relationship with the attorney. To discuss your case with an experienced Omaha parking lot accident lawyer, call Berry Law for a free consultation.