Am I at fault if I hit an illegally park vehicle?

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Jeffrey Johnson is a legal writer with a focus on personal injury. He has worked on personal injury and sovereign immunity litigation in addition to experience in family, estate, and criminal law. He earned a J.D. from the University of Baltimore and has worked in legal offices and non-profits in Maryland, Texas, and North Carolina. He has also earned an MFA in screenwriting from Chapman Univer...

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UPDATED: Dec 9, 2012

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Insurance Question from Glenarden, MD

Asked on 12/09/2012

Am I at fault if I hit an illegally park vehicle? I was backing out of my parking space in front of my home at night & did not see the vehicle behind me parked in a no parking zone. I drive a truck & the car I hit was black & I did not see it. My insurance said I'm am fault.

Answer given on December 20, 2012

If you back into another car, even if it is illegally parked, the cause of the accident is usually the fault of the driver who was backing. While you did not expect a car to be where it was, you are responsible to back safely. There could have been a child or pedestrian behind you, so you must look carefully before backing up.You can see what the damages are for the other car, and you may decide to pay for the repairs yourself. If not, and the damages exceed $750 to $1,000 your insurance company will charge you for the accident. However, since you have already spoken to your insurance company you should go ahead with the claim through them. Remember, there is no deductible for the damages to the other car. If you have collision damage, your deductible for collision will apply before the insurance company will pay for your damage. You do not need to have your car repaired.

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