It seems simple enough, if the police officer gives the at-fault driver a ticket, you would assume that their insurance company will find them at fault. However, when two parties get into an accident when they are both driving, and if they have different accounts of the story, and each account blames the other driver, the insurance companies will "investigate" to determine which of the two drivers is liable, to determine who has to pay.
Determining who is at fault, is considered determining "liability' . Every case begins with insurance company investigating and gathering as much information as possible. Insurance companies review any evidence available from the scene of the accident. For example, the police report, any tickets given out, etc. Insurance companies will also interview all the drivers involved in the accident and any other witnesses. Accident photos and photos of damage to the vehicles may also be reviewed.After the insurance companies investigate each insurance company will make their own determination on liability.
Unfortunately, even if the at-fault driver admits fault at the scene of the crash, the insurance company will not accept liability, until they have spoken with their insured and all involved parties. This can cause major delays if the insurance company cannot reach their insured or a particular witness. We have seen them take up to 30 days to agree to accept liability. This is a major problem and can leave some victims stranded if they don't have their own rental car coverage.
The insurance companies can also apportion fault, where they find that their insured is only a certain percentage at fault. That is why it is important to have a good policy protecting yourself in the event of these types of delays and a lawyer on your side fighting the difficult and slow moving insurance companies. Call us today at 404-436-1LAW!