How Right-of-Way Impacts Your Insurance Claim
Any violation of traffic laws can play a role in liability assignment for a car accident claim. In Wyoming, a driver whose negligence caused a crash may be held liable for resulting injuries. Failure to yield the right-of-way is a type of traffic violation that often results in accidents. Insurance companies investigate collisions to determine who had the right-of-way and who may be liable for the crash.
What Is the Law on Right-of-Way in Wyoming?
Right-of-way laws are covered in the Wyoming statutes, Title 31 — Motor Vehicles. Drivers are required to yield the right-of-way at stop signs and yield signs. If there are no stop signs or yield signs, drivers must stop before entering a crosswalk on the near side of the intersection (or at the point nearest the intersecting roadway providing a view of approaching traffic) and yield to vehicles and pedestrians.
How Do Right of Way Violations Occur?
Drivers can violate the right-of-way of other motorists in various traffic situations. For example, a driver may:
- Fail to yield to oncoming traffic at a yield sign
- Fail to stop at a red light or a stop sign
- Fail to merge safely into oncoming traffic when entering a freeway
- Collide with a vehicle traveling straight through an intersection while executing a left turn
- Cut another driver off while turning right on red after a stop
What Do Insurance Companies Look for in Determining Liability?
There may be more than one insurance adjuster investigating a car accident – one for each of the drivers involved in the crash. When conducting investigations, adjusters will look at the police report, examine vehicles for damage, speak with eyewitnesses, review medical reports, and examine the auto insurance coverage of the drivers involved. They determine liability based on the legal definition of negligence in that state. Wyoming has contributory negligence laws. Negligence is based on whether a person has a duty of care to another and whether he or she failed in that duty.
What Should You Do After a Crash Caused by Another Driver?
- If you have been involved in a car accident, the first thing to do is to get emergency medical attention for anyone who needs it.
- Notify the police. Give a simple, truthful statement of what occurred to the investigating officer, including whether the other driver violated your right-of-way.
- Do not admit fault for the accident to anyone. Check to see if any person involved in the crash needs emergency medical treatment and exchange names, contact information, vehicle registration, driver’s license, and insurance information with the other drivers.
- Get names and contact information for any eyewitnesses to the accident. You may need their testimony later as evidence in your case.
- Take pictures of the accident scene, including vehicle damage and relative positions, skid marks or accident debris on the road, traffic signs, and any visible injuries sustained by you or your passengers.
- Check for any available dash-cam or surveillance camera footage of the crash.
- Get medical attention for your injuries, even if you believe they are minor. Adrenaline from the crash can mask symptoms, and some may not appear immediately.
- Speak with an experienced car accident attorney as soon as possible for your best chance of recovering the maximum compensation in a car accident claim.
Our Gillette personal injury attorneys at Steven Titus & Associates, P.C. are dedicated and knowledgeable advocates for injured people. We have the skills and resources to effectively pursue the compensation you deserve for serious injury caused by the negligence of another. Contact us at (307) 257-7800 to schedule a free case strategy session if you have been hurt in a car accident by a driver who violated your right-of-way.
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