Backing Up Accidents and Right-of-Way

If another car backs into you, they are at fault, right? Not necessarily. It depends on where you are located—in a parking lot, a driveway or on a street. If both vehicles were backing up around the same time, other factors may apply.

Backing up in parking lots

Right-of-way rules for parking lots apply to backing out of parking spaces.

If two cars are backing out of a parking space at the same time, each driver is responsible for ensuring safety. Typically, if one car is already backing out, the other driver must wait for the driver to clear them before existing their space. If they don’t wait and crash into the other car, courts would likely find them at fault.

When it’s difficult to tell which driver started backing out first, determining fault becomes more difficult. If one driver was texting or distracted and not paying attention, this might be a factor in assigning a percentage of fault for the accident.

Backing out of driveways

New York law grants the right-of-way to traffic and pedestrians on roadways. This means that drivers must yield to traffic and pedestrians if entering the roadway from a driveway, alley or private road. If another car backed into you as you were driving or walking down the road, they would be at fault.

If damages were within the policy limits, no-fault insurance would cover the accident. In such a case, determining fault may not matter. However, negligence becomes an issue when damages meet the NY severe injury threshold. Meeting the severe injury threshold allows accident victims to sue the other party for damages.

What should you do another car backs into you and serious injury results?

If you suffer serious injury, you should speak with an accident lawyer as soon as possible. At the Law Office of John Fazzini, our initial consultation is free. Fees only apply if we pursue a case and settle or win in court.